IDC apparently still has faith that the PC will continue to be a cash cow for Wintel but there is a problem that consumers are preferring small cheap computers…
“The PC ecosystem faces some work to properly educate the market”
I have news for IDC and Wintel. Consumers have already been educated
- by global warming,
- PCs slowing down,
- PCs re-re-rebooting,
- prices not reflecting the real cost of technology, and
- M$ and Apple and Oracle suing the world rather than competing.
You can only abuse customers so long before they find alternatives and right now, hundreds of millions of people are preferring to buy a small cheap computer running */Linux than their next Wintel PC. Consumers are finally evaluating price/performance and seeing the light. It’s only a matter of time before OEMs and retailers will too. Many OEMs of PCs are seeing tight margins and falling shipments while OEMs of small cheap computers are finding they are only limited by their imaginations, not their products. Will IDC be the last to notice?
Wintel can advertise until the cows come home but consumers have already seen small cheap computers in their hands and the hands of acquaintances doing most of what they could do with a huge, power-hungry and expensive PC. If consumers stop doing some unnecessary things they may find their PC is also unnecessary. Further the mobility users have with Android/Linux gadgets is exquisite compared to the burden of a notebook PC. How many really want to go back to the old way of doing things?
M$ can add features and advertise them for “8” but who is listening? Intel can cut power-consumption dramatically using Moore’s Law, but ARM is always one or two steps ahead in power-consumption even one or two steps behind in Moore’s Law. ARMed CPUs cost much less to buy. OEMs can offer ultrabooks without giving users much benefit at all. If you are going to handle something that requires two hands, why not make it a tablet? With voice activated user-interfaces and applications, is a keyboard really necessary or just a bottleneck for less skilled typists?
The decline in rate of growth of PC shipments is not a blip. It’s a reflection of real change in the market including users. Users are using PCs less and don’t miss them. Of course, many use personal computers that IDC calls “not PCs”. Users don’t care how IDC defines them. Users want small cheap computers.
One thing IDC does get right: the opportunities for OEMs and retailers in IT is mostly in emerging markets. Those segments cannot concentrate on mature markets and remain relevant. The emerging markets are not locked in to Wintel.