VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) is a growing trend. The idea is to stream a standard boot image from a central storage repository so you can save on desktop support and maintenance costs. You avoid having to run endpoint protection products, or patching individual desktops, and you can distribute your desktops around the world as long as you have a reasonably fast Internet connection and a Web browser to kick things off.
But VDI is fraught with complexities. You can read why in my post in ITWorld today here.