Firstly, in order to decipher what Device-as-a-Service is we need to clarify the differences to Desktop-as-a-Service.
Is focused on providing a data-centre based, highly-secured virtual desktop, which is accessible on numerous devices.
DaaS is a versatile way to manage the hardware delivery and management of the devices. The service is wide ranging and permits the customer to choose from a 'shopping list' to match accurately what they require; however, it covers the supply of a device through to proactive monitoring and full lifecycle management.
Staying ahead of the curve
All the ‘big players’ are very much at the beginning with offering this as a service -this is why there is so much misunderstanding about what it really is. In all actuality, various vendors have differing views, but this could be because they have different priorities and capabilities. Is it going to stop customers buying through CapEx and keeping the management of their devices within their organisation? Simple answer, no. If providers don't embrace DaaS will they get left behind? Yes, this option offers more flexibility for you and your organisation. Flexibility and choice is the key elements for customer decisions.
Additionally, is 'Device-as-a-Service' a hyped finance model that enables customers to change acquisitions that are historically bought through CapEx, to OpEx? No. Is it significant? Definitely. Is it essential? No, it offers more flexibility.
A finance option is the method which best suits the solution and perhaps brings the greatest cost-efficiency, but it's an option for your organisation that again allows flexibility.
Making it cost-effective
This feeds into the consumption-based trend most customers and suppliers are trying to embrace currently with the likes of Office 365 and Cloud Computing, making it flexible to dynamic businesses.
Managed Print Services offers print hardware, on finance, delivered and followed up with ongoing support and pro-active management to ensure customers can focus on more important areas and get maximum cost and efficiency savings. So, is DaaS copying a proven method? Probably, but it is not being treated the same.
The real value is ongoing analytics and performance data, which we can give back to the customer. In a world driven by data, it’s bizarre that this is limited on customer devices. As a supplier, we can use the data to improve the service of the equipment, and as a customer, you can use the insightful data to make more smart and informed decisions for better cost and efficiency savings. We can show how efficient a disparate fleet of machines are operating, give component-level proactive health monitoring & maintenance and ultimately increase the user experience of the devices.
Is DaaS the end goal? No, it is the first step from large vendors who have predominantly provided transactional products to contractual offerings. In the future we will see certain 'as-a-Service' models combine for end user devices (printers, laptops, pc, mobile devices, connectivity and unified com's etc) letting suppliers to offer a true 'workplace-as-a-Service' offering on a single contract that allows flexibility based on per desk or consumption model basis.