I don’t look at the “partnership” of VMware and Google on the VDI client for Chromebook as a validation of the future of VDI. I believe it actually helps to further my argument that VDI will be regulated to the role similar to that of mainframe terminal emulators. Windows applications running on Chromebooks don’t align with the vision of cloud based application consumption. The ambition of a Chromebook is to be an everyday/all day computing device. Throwing a VDI client on a device such as a Chromebook doesn’t align with the roadmap. VDI’s strength doesn’t lay in the type of offline computing that’s done on laptops. Chromebooks shine when they are used with applications that are designed for both offline and online use. Google has done a good job of making Google Apps work reasonably well both on and offline.
VDI on a device such as a Chromebook is just a bridge from the future of EUC to legacy applications. Service providers such as Microsoft and Google desire to shift computing to cloud based applications and revenue such as Google Docs and Office 365. Presenting legacy full client applications via VDI is just emulation of an aging computing model.
I can see why this may be a necessary evil for organizations looking to move to a Cloud based EUC model that ultimately doesn’t rely on legacy services and applications. I just don’t see it as a validation of continued investment in VDI from an enterprise perspective. I would like to see vendors continue to make Google App/Office 365 type of investments that break the reliance on legacy infrastructure and applications. The focus should be on the shift to the software defined infrastructure.