In the third quarter, Samsung took the number one spot in the list of makers of smart phones. The whole market for smart phones was 115million in the third quarter, surpassing x86 PC unit shipments. That’s up 42% from 2010 but only a few percent up from the second quarter. Samsung shipped 24million smart phones.
This product represents a huge shift in how IT is done. Anything that can fit on the tiny screen or come out of the speaker or come in on the camera is fair game and Wintel is worried. How bad will the situation of Wintel be a year from now when a few hundred million more smart phones will have shipped? People who may have gone years without buying Wintel but enjoying Android/Linux may never come back and the hundreds of millions of first-time computer users may never use Wintel. The best Wintel can see for the next few years is flat growth but I expect a downturn now that hard drives are in short supply.
Not only is hard drive production disrupted by flooding in Thailand, it is submerged. The downturn could be more than a couple of quarters. “the best guess for resolving the problem was three to six months.” Ouch! Poor Wintel… Is the world about to demand fanless/disless personal computers, especially Android/Linux on ARM?