While HP's decision to move away from the marginally profitable PC desktop business seems to have come as a shock to many, a quick look at what HP has been doing with their Virtual Desktop Infrastructure makes it clear that they are more than ready for this move. A look at their entire product set based on the VDI model shows how minimalized the desktop hardware is and much effort they have put into supporting virtualization from Citrix, VMware, and Microsoft.
By moving the desktop infrastructure completely into the datacenter, the direction that HP clearly believes is the future for enterprise business computing, the client endpoint hardware effectively becomes meaningless. As long as there is a quality display and a fast network connection, HP will be able to deliver the same "desktop" experience to any user connected to their infrastructures.
Over the last few months HP has revised their desktop reference architecture for VDI with every major VDI vendor as well as their core reference architecture for HP's product line. They have a complete portfolio of hardware and software designed to enable, deploy and manage a complete VDI infrastructure and are, for the most part, attempting to be as operating system agnostic as possible, allowing their clients to determine what the back-end OS is and how they will implement a VDI environment.
The HP VDI Client Virtualization Reference Architecture includes server-based computing, application virtualization, and blade workstations allowing for a mix and match infrastructure that can be focused to meet the explicit needs of different business activities. An end-users runtime VDI instance can be implemented anywhere o the network or even delivered via a cloud computing model, making use of whatever infrastructure pieces are necessary for that specific client.
It hasn't been long since since describing a desktop PC commodity hardware could get you into hot water when you worked for a hardware vendor like HP. Now the entire concept is that the desktop hardware isn't even a commodity; it's incidental to the task of getting work done and is just the portal to user data and workflow.