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Thin clients promoted as a green alternative

Antony Savvas

British businesses could save £78m in electricity bills and slash CO2 emissions by 485,000 tonnes a year by switching from PCs to thin clients, researchers have claimed.

Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany used thin clients from Igel Technology to investigate the power and CO2  emissions of thin clients against traditional business PCs, and discovered significant power, ecological and financial savings.

“Energy consumption when in operation was up to 50% lower than for conventional PCs,” said Dr Hartmut Pflaum, a Fraunhofer researcher. “While PCs consume about 85W on average, thin clients including their server get by with 40W to 50W. In view of climate change and the need to reduce CO2  emissions, this is an important factor,” he said.

Igel said that when using a conservative estimate of 10 million business desktop PCs in operation around the UK, businesses could save a total of £78m a year and cut CO2 emissions by 485,000 tonnes, if they switched to thin clients.

Igel estimated such a reduction in CO2 emissions would remove the equivalent environmental impact of 85,000 average UK households each year.

Accessing information stored on a server, thin clients have no moving parts and little memory, whilst maintaining most PC functionality. Thin clients therefore use less power and can be centrally managed.

The Igel sponsored thin client research can be viewed at:
www.igel.com

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