The Covid-19 pandemic forced millions of people to work from home, and organisations worldwide had to transfer critical apps and data to the cloud to improve business resilience and agility. To support the new remote workforce, many turned to Windows Virtual Desktop to give remote users a secure, easy to manage, productive personal computing experience with Windows 10 from the cloud.
Going forward, organisations will need to support an evolving set of remote and hybrid work scenarios. To help meet these new hybrid work demands, Microsoft is expanding its vision to become a flexible cloud VDI platform for nearly any use case—accessible from virtually anywhere. A modern VDI platform needs to be secure, scalable, and easy to manage while delivering a seamless, high-performance experience to end-users. It should also empower organisations with the flexibility to customize and build solutions with its core technology. This blog will discuss the new capabilities, new pricing for app streaming, and the rebranding of Windows Virtual Desktop service to Azure Virtual Desktop.
Microsoft is continually adding new capabilities to the core Azure Virtual Desktop platform to assist you in onboarding and managing your Azure Virtual Desktop deployment.
Many organisations are using Azure Virtual Desktop to stream apps to their own employees who are covered by existing license entitlements. However, many organisations also want to use Azure Virtual Desktop to deliver applications “as-a-service” to customers and business partners as well.
Microsoft has announced a monthly per-user access pricing option for organisations to use Azure Virtual Desktop to deliver apps from the cloud to external users. For example, this would enable software vendors to deliver their app as a SaaS solution that can be accessed by their customers. In addition to the monthly user price for Azure Virtual Desktop, organisations also pay for Azure infrastructure services based on usage.
The new per-user access pricing option will be effective on January 1, 2022. To help organisations get started now, there is a special promotion with no charge to access Azure Virtual Desktop for streaming first-party or third-party applications to external users. This promotion is effective from July 14, 2021, to December 31, 2021.
Pricing for monthly user access rights effective on January 1, 2022, will be:
• $5.50 per user per month (Apps)
• $10 per user per month (Apps + Desktops)
This promotion only applies to external user access rights. Organisations would continue to pay for the underlying Azure infrastructure. Organisations should continue to use existing Windows license entitlements, such as Microsoft 365 E3 or Windows E3 and higher, for app streaming to their employees.
To learn more about these announcements, please sign up for our upcoming webinar.