Zero clients have not traditionally emphasized style. Historically, they have been used more in industrial environments rather than offices, and the emphasis was providing the most performance for the least cost. The market has been shifting however, and in response, HP has changed the look of its All-in-One Zero Client, which was announced this week. The HP t310 G2 All-in-One Zero Client is a narrow bezel device with a virtually borderless full HD display and new ergonomic capabilities that allow the workspace to be adjusted for individual users.
“Zero clients are really all about zero management, with no management being required for them,” said Jeff Groudan, vice president and global head of Thin Clients at HP. “They excel in environments where you deploy them and rarely touch them again afterwards.”
Historically, that has led to their being more of an industrial solution, where they have been deployed in environments like distribution centres, factories and pharmacies.
“Compared to regular thin clients, their advantage is less management, so you have a lower cost of ownership,” Groudan said. “Their disadvantage is that they aren’t always as flexible from a future-proofing perspective in terms of updating them, which is especially important in some aspects like unified communications. So where environments change more over time, people tend to prefer a device with an embedded OS. Where they don’t, these are a good option because they have a lower TCO.”
A couple of important trends have emerged over the past several years, however, which impact both the zero clients’ use cases, and their design.
“We have seen a change where these devices are now more in front of end customers than they were in the past,” Groudan said. “They are now selling more into segments like the public sector, schools – both K-12 and higher education – and engineering environments. A good half of our zero client business today can be classified as this kind of office user.”
“We have been seeing accelerated growth in these public cloud-hosted use cases, where the workload is accessible in a browser, in areas like digital signage, kiosks, and secure training and testing,” he said. “This is opening up new markets for partners and new opportunities for our customers.”
The other key trend relates to the increased use of these devices by end users.
“The feedback was that because the type of users has evolved, with more knowledge workers using them, the customers wanted a better design,” Groudan said. “This is a megatrend which has affected all parts of HP’s portfolio, giving business devices more attractive designs, as well as consumer friendliness. The users of thin clients are now the same people using these other devices, and they now have the same design expectations. Until now, we have lagged here in these clients because of their industrial DNA.”
The HP t310 G2 All-in-One Zero Client – HP also has two display and four display models in its zero client portfolio – brings these devices in line with the general design trend. As a result, ithe HP t310 G2 now has a virtually borderless full HD 23.8-inch display, with a wide-viewing angle and sharp, detail-rich color reproduction.
“In addition to the narrow bezel, it is fully ergonomic,” Groudan said. The stand can now be adjusted up or down, and tilted, swiveled or rotated to support landscape and portrait mode to customize the workspace to meet the individual user needs.
The HP t310 G2 All-in-One Zero Client is powered by the Teradici Tera2 PCoIP zero client processor, which delivers full frame rate 3D graphics and high-definition media even over high-latency networks. It is managed by Teradici’s PCoIP Management Console, and a one-year subscription to Teradici Desktop Access is included with the purchase. These devices are also easy to deploy out if the box, and a DisplayPort makes multi-display setup easy by enabling easy attachment of a second display. The devices are also compatible with VMware and Amazon virtual workspace environments.
“Our entire thin client category is based around driving a reinvention around the category, focused on future growth in public cloud hosted workloads to use cases beyond server-based computing,” Groudan concluded. “They feature beautiful design, more frictionless management, and a seamless end user experience. As workloads move into the cloud, we think the thin client model has a lot of legs. We just have to repurpose it and optimize it for these use cases.”
The HP t310 G2 All-in-One Zero Client is available now starting at $USD 529.