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Three Software Solutions That Put Your Desktop in the Cloud

Imagine having your desktop safely stored in the Cloud. No matter where you log in, your icons, wallpaper, and files are all exactly where you need them. No longer do you have to worry about backing up files or restoring everything following a hard drive crash. It’s all there, accessible from any web browser.

Storing a desktop in the Cloud is nothing new to businesses. However, HTML5 has made it easier for customers to access a desktop through a browser using a wide variety of devices. This technology is in high demand from users gravitating toward tablets and smartphones as a substitute for PCs and laptops. So many providers are offering this service to small businesses, it’s easy to get caught up in which service is best for you. Here are a few options to help you decide:

  • Mikogo Cloud Desktop. In addition to setting up server space in the cloud for their permanent workers, businesses can also rent space for contractors, interns, and other short-term workers. In addition to desktop storage, Mikogo adds on the ability to host meetings on allotted Cloud space, sharing the very screen space you’re storing on the Cloud. Mikogo is in the process of rolling out this service, so no pricing is presently available, but a free demo account is currently available by completing the form at http://www.mikogo.com/product/cloud-desktop/.
  • Nivio. Nivio has plans that include Microsoft Office licensing and pre-made desktops. You can even rent software and apps. You simply log in and a desktop is set up for you. Simply log into the site using any device and you’ll have a desktop that will always be available to you. Prices start at $35 per user per month ($50 per month if Microsoft Office is included) and include a Windows desktop, user management, a virtual file server, 10GB of storage per user, and comprehensive support.
  • Cloud My Office. Cloud My Office gives users an administrator panel through which they can add applications and customize their desktop to look as they prefer. Once created, users can access their desktop using any device with a web connection, including Android- and iOS-based tablets and smartphones. Pricing begins at $35.97 per user per month for plans that don’t include Microsoft Office licenses or $46.28 for plans that do.

There are quite a few benefits to having a Cloud-based desktop, including freedom from viruses and spyware. Small businesses are able to save money on paying for servers, PCs, and tech staff to support them–all of which can be a challenge for tight-budgeted businesses. Plus, because these services offer top-level security, you won’t have to worry about losing files by carrying them around on external hard drives.

Small businesses may be among the earliest adapters of Cloud-based desktops, with many unable to afford in-house servers. Cloud solutions provide the opportunity to take advantage of mobile device features without being tied to a laptop or PC to house a primary desktop. By trying out one of the above options, you can determine whether a Cloud-based solution is right for all of your employees.

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About Stephanie Faris

Stephanie is a freelance writer and young adult/middle grade novelist, who worked in information systems for more than a decade. Her first book, 30 Days of No Gossip, will be released by Simon and Schuster in spring 2014. She lives in Nashville with her husband.

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