Join Insentra Chief Cloud Architect Michael and Jaron Cohen, Microsoft Australia’s Windows Commercial Product Manager, as they discuss the future of the modern desktop, trends in how people work and how Microsoft plans to keep up with all the changes in technology. Stay til the end for some bloopers!
SOME KEY POINTS IN THE VIDEO INCLUDE
[0.30] Windows as a Service- what is the opportunity for partners and customers?
[1.40] The Future of the Modern Desktop
[3.05] How is Microsoft driving enterprise mobility?
[9.56] Jaron’s favourite Xbox game
[10.05] The number 1 question Insentra partners are asking around the Modern Desktop
READ THE TRANSCRIPT
Michael Webster: Welcome to The Download hosted by Webby. I’m here with Jaron Cohen today. Hi, Jaron, how are you?
Jaron Cohen: Hi.
Webby: Can you tell us who you are and what you do?
Jaron: Yes, sure. I look after the Commercial Windows business. That includes ensuring that our thousands of partners are delivering profitable services on Windows, our millions of customers are as productive in the way that they deploy Windows and secure, and the millions of end users are loving Windows 10.
Webby: Windows as a service, what’s the opportunity for partners?
Jaron: Windows has traditionally been a once every three-year project from any of our partners. Once every three years they’d walk up to a customer, they’d provide a statement of work and deliver a large project to move them from one version to the next version of Windows. Windows as a service is about delivering Windows in small incremental changes every six months. The opportunity for partners is to come back to those customers on a six-monthly basis and talk to them about the new features we delivered in Windows, the new features we delivered in Office, and understand how that delivers greater value for our end customers.
Webby: Great. For customers, what’s their advantage?
Jaron: For customers, it’s really a about how do we deliver a continuous stream of innovation in the first piece. The second piece is how do we keep our customers secure. The reality is when we look at the security landscape, the security threats are changing daily. Windows as a server allows us to continuously improve the security across our entire stack and deliver the security that meets the needs of customers today, as opposed to a version of Windows we might have built three years ago.
Webby: What do you see as the future of the modern desktop?
Jaron: For me, the future of the modern desktop is about how we empower users to be as creative as possible, allow them to use the technology that they want to use at the time that they need that technology. Also, how do we foster greater teamwork and collaboration between organizations and within organizations. How do we enable the user to find the information that they need at the right time and be able to take action when they need to take action.
Webby: What do you as the trends in the space?
Jaron: The key trends for me are how do we better protect information as users are using technology both inside the business but also outside the business. How do we empower users to use the device they want, the technology they want? How do we take that technology friction and empower users to work the way that they want to work?
Webby: Great. What’s driving these changes?
Jaron: I think the key thing that’s driving these changes is what users have come to expect. When I leave in the morning, I potentially grab a laptop that I need for work, I grab a tablet that I can actually get work done, and I grab a phone that I love. What’s driving these changes is how do we make all those pieces love the bits of technology. How do we make sure that that work laptop is just as loved as the phone that you spend all day on chatting on Facebook?
Webby: Microsoft’s now on the enterprise mobility. How are they driving enterprising mobility in this new world?
Jaron: When we think about enterprise mobility, we think about it very much as part of what we call the modern workplace. The modern workplace for us is how do we foster creativity, how do we enable teamwork, how do we deliver intelligent security. Enterprise mobility, for us, is a combination of those three pieces. How do we enable creativity? By enabling users to work where they want. How do we foster teamwork? By enabling them to connect with people. How do we ensure that their entire environment is secure?
Webby: What’s your new favorite feature in Windows 10?
Jaron: My favorite feature is placeholder file, placeholders, which was the most requested feature that we got when we launched Windows 10 as we removed it from Windows 8. Now, we’re actually delivering that back into the Windows 10 platform. That allows me to get the files that I need when I want them on the devices that I want where I happen to be.
Webby: Blockers for partners, how do they get over this new rapid adoption model? How do they articulate these to customers, and the business value? How would you suggest?
Jaron: I think partners are fairly lucky. They’ve had the history of Office 365, which has been an as a service product. I think transitioning those skills that they’ve learned around how do they keep customers up to date around Office 365, using the same skills around Windows is absolutely critical. The other advice I give to partners is how do they think about what’s their niche around a managed service.
Windows as a service does not mean that every partner needs to be a managed service or desktop as a service provider. I’m starting to see great growth in partners that are delivering just those regular six-monthly updates as a service, just the config managers as a service, just the security features of Windows 10 as a service. I think the key message as partners, think about where you want to differentiate relative to other partners, and understand how you turn that into a replicable service offering.
Webby: So it inspire. We heard a lot more about the modern desktop, can you explain that to us?
Jaron: As I just spoke about our four key solution area, one of which is the modern desktop. Within a modern desktop, we’re really bringing together three major product teams inside Microsoft. We bring together the Windows team, the Office and Office 365 team, and our Enterprise Mobility team to deliver a holistic solution for our customer. When we think about a holistic solution for our customers, again, we think about it across a couple of areas. How do we enable greater creativity? How do we enable users to create content, to be more creative? We tipped it with pen, with touch, with dials in a better creativity in terms of what they’re actually doing.
How do we enable greater teamwork and collaboration? That’s been core to what Office has done, but how do expand that out across that entire portfolio? How do we secure that entire platform? How do we deliver intelligent security out of our Cloud for our users and how do we simplify? Simplify is probably one of the most interesting ones. When we think about the desktop, the desktop has tradition in a very complex environment. What we’re committed to is simplifying across those three major products and delivering the right technology for the end users when they actually need it.
Webby: You just mentioned intelligent Cloud and Enterprise Mobility, can you explain how Microsoft’s intelligent Cloud helps?
Jaron: I spoke about it in relation to security in the first piece. When we think about security, we’ve realized that it’s no longer reasonable to consider a customer’s security posture once every three years when they do a desktop upgrade. The security landscape is changing daily, the threat landscape is changing hourly. What Microsoft delivers in the space is we combine security built-in to our products, built into Windows, built into Office with a massive network of sensors.
If we think about it, we have 500 million Windows 10 users, we’ve hundreds of millions of authentications against Azure, we have hundreds of millions of Office 365 users. We take all of that inside and we deliver it to our customers through what we call the intelligent security graph to allow them to respond far quicker to security compromises and security threats.
Webby: I’m a big fan of Enterprise Mobility and Security. What’s your favorite part of Enterprise Mobility and Security?
Jaron: The favorite thing for me is how we’re tying that together with Office and Windows. Today, I can take a PC from HP, I can ship it out to an end user still in its brown box. They open that PC up, they can connect to their local Wi-Fi network, and I can provision an entire desktop to that user. Including Windows, the security associated with Windows, Office, Office 365, and all of the policies for an organization without that end user ever coming in to the IT department. Most exciting thing for me is about how we’re actually delivering all these great bits of technology in a simpler way for our users and empowering users to work where they want.
Webby: I’ve been reading about AutoPilot recently. How does AutoPilot fit into this?
Jaron: AutoPilot is one of those first services that I’ve described before which combines Windows, Office and our management stack to deliver a PC or a device to a user when they need it, and allow the IT department to pre-provision that device by itself. When the IT department buys the next 10 service books, they can assign a specific serial number from one of those devices to yourself. The moment you open that device up and connect to the internet, it can automatically be provisioned for your IT environment. Be it from a policy perspective, be it from Office perspective, and you’re up and running in a few minutes.
Webby: All that’s excellent to hear about Enterprise Mobility and AutoPilot. What’s the key message that you want our partners to take out of this?
Jaron: The key message from my side is continue to support customers on their journey to a modern desktop. Support them from the move from Windows 7 to Windows 10, Office 2013 to the Office 365 Pro Plus. Also then transition to understand how you’re going to move your customers to the as a service model, how you’re going to keep your customers current and up-to-date, and how do we enable your customers to take advantage of the continuous stream of innovation that Microsoft’s going to deliver.
Every six months, I’m going to deliver a new set of features for Windows, a new set of features for Office. Understand, for a partner perspective, how do you get those features in front of the right user and make sure that they’re delivering value for your end customers.
Webby: What’s your favorite device that you use today?
Jaron: At the moment, I’m using an HP Spectre 360. It’s a thin, light, silver, fancy-looking laptop. I love it. As I said, it’s thin, light. It works virtually the entire day on a single battery charge. It’s convertible so I can flip it around and watch Netflix when I get at home.
Webby: Nice. What’s your favorite Xbox game?
Jaron: My favorite game would have to be Limbo. Giant spiders playing with my six-year-old, no better way to upset my lovely wife.
Jaron: I’ve got a question for you.
Webby: Yes, shoot.
Jaron: You tell me Insentra is partner-obsessed in everything you do. What’s the number one questions that your partners are asking about in relation to the modern desktop?
Webby: I think it’s getting the head around what is Windows as a service, and what does that actually mean for their customers, and how they can actually leverage this in their business model. The challenge of the traditional three-year IT cycle, I’m going to build a new version of Windows. Three years later, another version of Windows is going to come, as we have for the Vistas, 7, 8, 8.1. I think that it’s now six-monthly, and why do I have to do this so quickly? What is the advantage to this?
Jaron: Interesting. I strongly suggest your partners have a look at the content we’ve made available online through the Windows for Business website, where we detailed exactly what Windows as a service is. I’d also suggest that your partners have a look at Windows Analytics. Windows Analytics is a great tool, a free tool we make available that allows partners to build an as a service practice on top of Windows. Allows them to understand what changes are coming in the next release, understand the apps that are going to work, and build a practice to ensure that their customers are ready for that change that we’re delivering towards the platform.
Webby: Fantastic. I didn’t know about the Analytics, can you tell me some more?
Jaron: Sure. Windows Analytics is a service we make available. What we do is we take the over 500 million PCs that are running Windows 10. We take all the knowledge we have about the software they’re running, the drivers and the hardware, and we make that available to our customers as a free service. Imagine what it would mean if your partners, they could rock up to their next customer and understand which apps would work on Windows 10, which devices will work on Windows 10, and allow them to prioritize the users that they need to move to Windows 10 first, and discover which users they can’t move to Windows 10. Free Cloud-delivered service available to all of our partners and all of our customers.
Webby: What if I was going to say, “How do I access that?”
Jaron: Hop online, search for Windows Analytics. It’s a Cloud-delivered service, part of the Azure Suite.
Webby: Awesome, I think our partners will really love that. I’m definitely going to check it out. Business books, would you have a suggestion for a book that people should read?
Jaron: It’s amazing, right? My world is so dynamic that I don’t spend a huge amount of time in reading full-form books. I spend most of my time actually just listening to news and understanding what’s changing in the dynamic IT environment. Rather than suggesting a business book, what I’d suggest is follow a number of key influences in the Twitter space. Look at the likes of The Economist and understand what’s actually happening inside your customer environment.
Webby: Great. Last thing, three takeaways that our business leader should take from this/
Jaron: In my mind, the key takeaways are how do you enable your workforce? How do you deliver the technology that your workforce wants? How do you remove friction from your workforce in relation to technology? How do you make sure technology supports the way your workers want to work, as opposed to create friction inside their environment. The third thing is understand how you can better secure the environment in a new world where the threats are not about kids delivering scripts and malicious bit of code, but you’ve actually got organizations that are fundamentally trying to make money out of security around the middle of this inside your organization.
Webby: Great. I really appreciate your time and your insights. It was really excellent to hear about Enterprise Mobility and Security, AutoPilot, and your favorite Xbox game. Look forward to seeing what Microsoft’s going to do with the modern desktop. Thank you for your time.
Jaron: Pleasure, lovely to chat.
ABOUT JARON COHEN
Jaron Cohen is Microsoft Australia’s Windows Commercial Product Manager and is responsible for growth of the Australia commercial Windows ecosystem including the profitability of the hundreds of partners who build services on Windows, thousands of business who depend on Windows to be productive and secure their organisation and the millions of vocal customers who use Windows every day.
Before joining Microsoft Jaron led the Telstra Mobile, Wireless Business Development team responsible for developing Telstra’s first 2.5 & 3G commercial services.
Jaron has a Bachelor of Business (Accounting and Finance) and Bachelor of Science (Computing Science) from the University of Technology Sydney and University of New South Wales.
MORE VIDEOS LIKE THIS