What is desktop as a service (DaaS)?

By IBM Services

Desktop as a service helps you meet today’s mobile demands

As businesses seek out a means for users to seamlessly work across virtual, physical and connected environments, many pursue alternatives to the traditional desktop deployment model. This traditional model involves IT administrators installing operating systems and applications, as well as managing upgrades, updates and the security of their employees’ devices. With today’s increasingly mobile and remote workforce, the desktop deployment model can be costly, bog down productivity and require lots of flexibility to adjust to the latest business needs while protecting against the latest cybersecurity threats.

Desktop as a service (DaaS) — not to be confused with the database as a service model — is a viable alternative to the desktop deployment model. DaaS offers businesses a way to give their users consistent access to data and applications across their devices, stalwart security, and reduced costs and expenditures.  

The DaaS benefits

Here are several key benefits of a DaaS model: 

Reduced cost

The DaaS model helps deliver virtual desktop environments that include operating systems, applications, files and user preferences from the cloud. It gives users access to these environments from a wide variety of mobile devices.⁽¹⁾ As a cost-saving solution, DaaS doesn’t require any upfront investment in expensive hardware and software; its only costs are the virtual desktops that are in use. DaaS eases the transition from a capital expense (CAPEX) business model to an operational expense (OPEX) model.  

Optimize productivity

To help businesses optimize their end-user productivity, the DaaS model helps provide a strong and consistent user experience across a variety of mobile devices. By letting users access the same applications and enterprise information on their mobile devices, it also helps free up IT staff, letting them focus their resources on higher-value projects. 


By avoiding the process of installing applications and storing data on local drives, the DaaS model offers improved data security. As a result, it helps prevent corporate and consumer information from falling into the wrong hands — even if a device is lost or stolen. When coupled with the redundancy of authentication controls, the data stays protected in the cloud. If a device is lost or stolen, the employee can resume work on a new device as soon as it’s received. The security is further boosted by having a service provider that stores the applications and data in an International Standards Organization (ISO)- and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-compliant data center. Ultimately, the security solutions provided by DaaS help defend businesses from cyberattacks and manage regulatory compliance.⁽²⁾

Higher scalability

The DaaS model delivers higher scalability and flexibility, allowing businesses to provision or deprovision as their needs change. These desktops can be provisioned for users quickly, providing greater agility, scalability and flexibility, allowing them to keep up with workforce demands and the latest business requirements.  

IBM can help

IBM® Mobile Virtualization Services is the DaaS solution for the traditional desktop deployment model and your desktop and application delivery challenges. This IBM solution offers a speedy, simple, agile, cloud-based and fully managed solution that delivers a desktop subscription service designed for enterprises.

For access to your data and application processes in a security-rich environment, IBM Mobile Virtualization Services DaaS uses a comprehensive approach designed to interface with existing authentication management. It also provides a predesigned and prebuilt approach. This approach helps deliver the highest levels of quality and reliability in a security-rich environment for your virtual desktops and flexible delivery models, as well as standard cloud-based offerings and dedicated infrastructure.

IBM is here to help you bring your business into today’s digital workspace. For more information about how to garner greater scalability and flexibility, and gain a security solution that adheres to industry standards while lowering costs, schedule a no-cost one on one with an IBM Digital Workplace Services expert. You can also read more online about IBM Workplace Virtualization Services. IBM experts are here to help you get the answers you need to move your business forward with confidence. 


1. IBM Cloud Education, “Desktop as a service explained: What you need to know before getting started”. December 6, 2018.

2. “IBM Mobile Virtualization Services – Desktop  as a Service”. August 2017.