VMware uncertain about when VDI will become mainstream

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Earlier this week VMware announced its Q1 2010 earning results. As usual, the Q&A session at the end of the call reserves interesting perspectives that are worth a mention.

In this specific call, VMware seemed particularly doubtful about the adoption timeframe of VDI as a mainstream technology.

The company continues to talk about VDI adoption in a very cautious way, mentioning desktop evaluations and proof of concepts, even if it has closed a deal for 30,000 virtual desktops with one of the largest banks in the world:

While we have a number of success stories, this market opportunity has not yet tipped and our challenge remains in moving the broader market from evaluation to purchase.

We expect to learn more about how this market will unfold over the coming quarters…

This point is further clarified in the following Q&A. At this point VMware doesn’t have a clear idea of when VDI will become a mainstream technology:

Exactly when this market is going to tip though we don’t know. We were saying – engaged and focused on it, but I couldn’t tell you if its going to be at the end of the year or next year or exactly when that’s going to be but our eyes are certainly on the ball and we are going to make sure that when it does tip, we are there to take advantage of it.

Of course nobody expects VMware to be able to predict exactly when VDI is going to be mainstream, but it’s noteworthy how cautious the company is considering its position as leading player in the space.

Ironically, at the end of 2008, the Yankee Group predicted the mainstream adoption of VDI for 2009 (more preditions from major analysis firms at the virtualization.info Virtualization Industry Predictions page).