New HP thin clients aimed at performance user
Updates include improved graphic and CPU performance.
Thin clients are generally deployed to users with very specific task-based requirements that that don’t need a lot of multimedia capabilities, as these are machines with little or no desktop storage and generally very power-efficient designs. Most of the compute and storage, is handled in the data centre for these devices.
While you still won’t confuse these machines for workstations, with the unveiling of its new t820 thin client, HP is aiming to bring more users into the thin client fold by adding a new 2.9GHz Intel Core i5 CPU, and the option for discrete video powered by the AMD Radeon HD 7650A.
With the potentially substantial increase in power, buyers might be wondering why not simply go for a traditional desktop or laptop, but the thin client model has a number of benefits over the traditional offerings. WRLWND spoke with Jeff Groudan, marketing director, Thin Clients at HP about the new t820, who said in an enterprise environment, thin clients are easy to manage and highly secure because no data is actually residing on the desktop. And because the operating system is embedded, thin clients are generally is less susceptible to corruption and failure.
With those benefits in mind it’s not difficult to understand why industries such as financial, healthcare and military/defence might be interested in these new thin clients — precisely the markets that HP had in mind when it beefed up its offering.
“What we’ve tried to do on the t820 is marry up both of those needs — the traditional thin client requirements around reliability and security and manageability but bring in some more cutting edge hardware requirements around the CPU performance and the graphics and security,” Groudan said.
The CPU in the t820 is the fastest HP has ever had in its thin clients, and the added graphics capabilities allow it to power up to three displays natively and up to seven displays with an added hub. It should help it gain adoption in industries that could not use thin clients in the past.
On the security side, HP has added the ability to do fiber-optic networking along with implementing a number of BIOS improvements suggested by NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) to help it gain adoption in the defence and military realms.
While thin clients have certainly come a long way, there can still be issues of lag between the data centre and thin client, especially in more CPU and bandwidth intensive operations like streaming video. “The network and the quality of the network plays a huge role in what kind of experience the end user gets,” Groudan said. HP is doing its part to remedy the issues with HP Velocity performance software which helps the thin client extrapolate packets as they are sent and received, so if a packet is dropped, it can continue on without the need to resend the packet. HP says the result is a better overall user experience.
HP is planning to have the t820 thin client available globally in November.