February 24, 2010, 11:06 AM — Pano Logic Inc. is gearing up to take on rivals in the nascent zero-client market.
Besides winning a $25 million round of venture capital that brings the total raised by Menlo Park, Calif.-based startup to $45 million, Pano will begin to license the zero-client technology used in its petite, stylish, green (3.5 watts) Pano Device to other hardware manufacturers.
Pano is also starting to openly question the credentials of other vendors of zero clients, which it defines as the smaller, greener and easier-to-manage offspring of today's thin clients.
"Our device is the only zero-client solution out there, period," said Parmeet Chaddha, executive vice-president of engineering for Pano. "It has no CPU, no storage, no local OS, no firmware upgrades, no configuration, no royalty fees."
Chaddha said that rivals are passing off thin client devices with processors and disks as zero clients. It's more than a pedantic issue -- Chaddha said that thin-clients consume more electricity and require more maintenance and updates to keep them running and secure.
By necessity, true zero clients such as Pano Logic's are also more efficient than conventional Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) protocols such as Microsoft 's Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP).
"Think of us like a PCI interface on the PC, just extended over the wire," he said.
The net result is that Pano Devices are faster and easier and cheaper to operate than conventional desktop PCs repurposed as thin clients, as well as dedicated thin clients that have their own CPU and drive, Chaddha said.
But with companies such as Wyse, which is preparing to release new version of its ThinOS codenamed Badger that doesn't require any local storage, will thin clients prove "zero" enough for most customers?