After publishing a reference design for its ‘zero client' computer last week, Pano Logic has announced its first big win to the design. Computer giant Fujitsu is to put the technology inside a conventional LCD monitor.

Pano Logic has been on the warpath about its radically stripped-down computer, the Cube, since launching in 2008. In essence, it's the opposite of a PC - the device has no memory, storage or processing whatsoever - and is designed to service the rise of interest in VMware desktop virtualisation. The Cube is almost a non-computer, a small box with only I/O for networking, a keyboard and a mouse.

Now it has a partner to push the technology into larger companies that Pano Logic believes will be starting to replace aged desktops in the next few years. That Fujitsu has chosen to integrate the technology inside a monitor, formally known as the Fujitsu Zero Client, was of no particular significance, said Pano Logic CEO, John Kish. He expected the company's reference design to turn up in other devices such as keyboards and even office phones in the coming months.

Why a reference platform for zero clients and why now?

According to Kish, the company was concerned that the concept was being applied to devices that were not, in fact, zero clients, but were really low-admin clients. These were two different things, said Kish.

"We believe that zero client is a technical term," he said. "First and foremost [we wanted] to try to put a stake in the ground as to what a zero client should be." The Pano Logic technology was so undemanding it was able to disappear inside almost any desktop device in a way that was not true of the thin clients sold by the company Kish used to work for, Wyse Technology.

Kish expected the zero client philosophy to take off in the coming five to seven years, during which time it would snatch up to 40 percent of the market for virtualised desktops. "Desktop virtualisation is about to superheat," said Kish.
The key to pushing the idea was having partners with scale and resellers on hand.

"Fujitsu is a gold standard in computing technology and an ideal strategic partner with the global sales and distribution infrastructure to take our VDI solution deeper into corporate environments worldwide," Kish noted in the official press release.

Pano Logic's reference design is defined in an overview on the company's website. More details on the Cube device itself can be found here.