The vClient initiative is a strategic move announced at VMworld in Las Vegas aimed to ensure VMware maintains its position in virtualisation amid competition from Microsoft.
Paul Maritz, VMware president and newly appointed chief executive officer, said the initiative is aimed at helping change the way businesses provide client-side or desktop computing to their users and solving what he called the "desktop dilemma" of whether to switch to thin client computing or not.
He said many companies using thin client computing were trading off a fat client experience for the cost benefits of thin client computing through centralisation.
This means they are also unable to meet the demands for rich end-user experiences on mobile devices.
"We believe we can use our client-side virtualisation technology to give people the best of both worlds - where they can equip users with the tools that those users need and have that permanently in the datacentre or the cloud, ready to jump down to whatever data device is being used," Maritz said.
The first step of the vClient initiative is the roll out of VMware View, which is a set of products that extend VMware's Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) to include server hosted virtual desktops and client virtual desktops that can run on any laptop or desktop computer.
The vClient Initiative also includes several new desktop virtualization technologies that will be introduced in 2009, such as client virtualisation, image management and offline desktop.
"The desktop of the future will not be a single device like a laptop or a thin client - it will be all the richness and personalization of their desktop experience accessible from any location," said Maritz.
Users want a desktop that follows them wherever they go while IT wants to manage those environments securely, cost effectively, and more easily than they do today, he said.
The vClient initiative is one of a slew of announcements by VMware this week that show the company is determined to maintain its leadership position through innovation and in the face of increased competition.