Intel must see a bright future in VMware. The company recently anted a cool $219 million investment for roughly 10 million shares of VMware stock! The purchase also gained Intel a seat on the board at VMware.
As you'll learned over at The Register, VMware is about to launch an IPO, so Intel stands to gain plenty should the VMware stock price rise. Seeing how virtual machine technology is definitely the next 'big thing' in computing, it's entirely likely that VMware will continue to increase its market share and thus its value.
Microsoft is making moves in the virtual machine market space with big plans for the next version of Windows Server. We can fully expect the Redmond giant to fully leverage its operating system monopoly to a considerable extent in trying to oust VMware from its hard-earned 'King of the Virtualization World" position.
I also think we'll see Microsoft make further VM moves with its successor to Vista.