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Thin is in and Desktops on Diets, Say Insurance Industry IT Managers

UK Insurance industry IT managers plan to put their desktops on diets over the next 24 months as research shows thin and zero client adoption looks set to rise from 20% to 39%. The managers say increased flexibility, security and speed of deployment are the primary benefits of thin client.

Currently 78% of the Insurance companies surveyed run a centralized IT infrastructure, with 80% of organizations using some thin or zero client desktops. The average number of desktops that are thin or zero clients is 20%, with PC's still dominating at 42%. 23% of users are also using notebooks and 19% tablets. But moving forward, IT managers believe that thin clients will be on 39% of desktops within the next two years as companies focus on the benefits of flexibility (56%), improved security (46%) and speed of deployment (44%). However, although thin and zero client use is set to almost double there are still mental obstacles to further implementation. The three top concerns with thin client deployment are: user dissatisfaction when the system goes down (42%), implementation costs (40%) and employee adoption (40%).

With almost all those surveyed (94%) saying an increase in the number of thin and zero clients on their desktops was likely or very likely, a third (32%) also confirmed that this increase could very likely in part come from converting existing hardware into centrally managed thin client-like devices.

The research, conducted by Dynamic Markets on a sample of 50 UK Insurance companies on behalf of IGEL Technology, also found little favoritism among the server-based computing providers with Citrix, VMware and Microsoft software all present in roughly half of all organizations with thin clients.

When it came to the desktop, 70% of the Insurance companies surveyed have more than one brand of thin client, 58% have three or more and 28% use four or more.

"This research demonstrates that insurance industry IT managers have a clear view that speed, flexibility and security are the prime motivators behind their desktop strategy," said Simon Richards, IGEL Technology Managing Director for UK & Ireland. "As a result, thin is in as the best way to bring these advantages to the desktop. But with the mix of technologies and desktop providers, no vendors appear as yet to have convinced the insurance industry of their vision on how best to deploy a thin desktop environment. It's a case of thin is in but which diet to follow? There is still much for vendors to do to convince the industry of their benefits."

For an executive summary of the research go to:
Published Friday, September 19, 2014 6:48 AM by David Marshall
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