Amazon and Microsoft are two of the most fully-featured as well as expensive providers of remote desktop infrastructure as well as other cloud-based services. They both offer a dizzying array of services, which often come coupled with other services.
Before you plunk down a big chunk of your organization's cash on one of these, take a look at a quick comparison between what they offer.
Keep in mind that which provider works for you is highly dependent on your company's specific use cases.
Cost for Value
Microsoft claims that Azure costs far less than Amazon's AWS. This should be taken with a grain of salt as, of course, cost varies with the scale of usage. Microsft does offer case studies to back up their claims. They do bank on the use of certain technologies such as Microsoft Windows licenses to explain the cost differences between Azure and Amazon AWS solutions.
If your company heavily leans on Microsoft Windows licenses, then it seems that Windows Virtual Desktop may be the solution for you.
Both Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure offer highly robust security. There is an extensive array of security layers and, should those fail, they both offer comprehensive backup solutions. For some Windows products, however, Microsoft does offer free security updates.
In terms of security, both companies are largely equal. Again, there is a slight advantage for Microsoft's remote desktop service if your company relies on Microsft software already.
Maturity of Service
Amazon's AWS Remote Workspaces was fully launched in March, 2014. This gives them an over-four-year head start when compared to Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop, which was launched in September, 2018. That being said, both companies have world-class cloud infrastructures and are actively developing the capabilities of their services.
If proven stability of the service is your top priority, Amazon's AWS Remote Workspaces is your better bet for Desktop as a Service.
Compliance and Certifications
Microsoft's Windows Virtual Desktop does claim the edge in terms of software and regulation compliance. They have a comprehensive list of certifications here. It should be noted that both Microsoft and Amazon are actively moving on this front and, of course, Amazon itself boasts an extensive list of compliance certifications, as seen here.
When using their remote desktop services, the full scope of their certifications likely won't affect your decision. However, in terms of sheer comprehensiveness, the advantage here goes to Microsoft
These are some of the most frequent concerns when choosing a remote desktop service. Of course, there are other providers in this industry as well, such as Citrix and Remote Workstations. As the industry changes, so will the deciding factors for choosing one service over another.