It’s happening. M$’s dream of one-PC/one-hard-drive/one licensing fee had a short spree and it is coming to an end.
“These devices will be increasing embraced as complements if not substitutes for PCs where voice and light data consumption are desired. It is likely that desktop PCs will be adversely impacted over the long-term by the adoption of hosted virtual desktops, which can readily use other devices like thin clients.”
“PCs are still seen as necessities, but the PC industry’s inability to significantly innovate and its overreliance on a business model predicated on driving volume through price declines are finally impacting the industry’s ability to induce new replacement cycles,” said George Shiffler, research director at Gartner.
So, while some deride our holding on to old PCs as cheap computers, the world is coming to hold onto their old PCs. If they are not broken, why replace them? We, here in the bush, have become “early adopters”. I like it. Growth will be in emerging markets. That other OS is in decline. Emerging markets want small cheap computers.
If that is not bad enough for the monopoly, here’s another take:
“Emerging markets will gain more than 50 percent of the total worldwide PC market by the end of 2011 but mature markets will face mounting challenges. The bad news, according to Gartner, is that consumers in emerging markets will simply leap frog PCs and move directly to alternative devices rather than following the traditional pattern of purchasing a PC as their first computing device.”
That means my prediction of ARM and GNU/Linux moving up the chain of IT is expected to continue for 2011. I like it. Expect PC prices to plummet if the growth is not there. Expect more choices of GNU/Linux on the desktop. OEMs will produce what the consumer wants, not what M$ wants them to produce. M$ is not big enough to buy off the emerging markets.