Gartner On Personal IT – 2013 to 2015

According to Gartner, the legacy PC shows little or no growth compared to tablets and smartphones. That makes sense:

  • the legacy PC is too expensive, noisy and it’s hard to maintain,
  • those small cheap computers allow most folks to do most tasks simply, and
  • they are portable. Yeah!

To put it into perspective, more small cheap computers will ship this year than all the legacy PCs that exist, by a factor of 1.2, and that factor is increasing, year to year. As the digital divide is being bridged, the legacy PC is falling into the chasm. No one is interested in buying a mainframe when a small cheap computer will do. That was true when the legacy PC came to be and it’s true today when the legacy PC can do more than most people need: drying hair, making noise, supplying unused expansion ports, taking up lots of room, wasting natural resources, costing several times as much to buy and to own, etc. The industry and the employment of huge resources for maintenance of the legacy PC is threatened. With it will die the mindshare and necessity for Wintel. */Linux on ARM can do the job better for a lot less money.

See Gartner Says Worldwide Traditional PC, Tablet, Ultramobile and Mobile Phone Shipments to Grow 4.2 Percent in 2014

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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23 Responses to Gartner On Personal IT – 2013 to 2015

  1. Mats Hagglund wrote, “I don’t take the Gartner figures as face value. Actually only 55% of pc are sold with Windows preinstalled.”

    We’ll have another chance to see the effect of FLOSS on M$’s bottom line for client OS in a couple of weeks… It keeps getting harder for them to hide the truth. It can’t be long before they drop the term “Windows” altogether. Their current CEO seems close.

  2. Mats Hagglund says:

    I don’t take the Gartner figures as face value. Actually only 55% of pc are sold with Windows preinstalled. It means just about 170 million Windows PC annually. With Windows mobiles Redmond got hardly more than 15% marketshare. Remember how Goldman Sachs estimated that Apple was bigger than M$ in 2012 (24% vs. 20%).
    2013 might not have been much different. Only exception was the growth of Android. They had some 60% market share. With figures of RIM and Bada we will move to year of 2015 with Android having 66% marketshare. Only 1 of 6 devices are running by Windows OS.

    Yes the world has changed and there will be no return to era of Microsoft dictatorship.

  3. ram says:

    Trains stop at the train station. Buses stop at the bus station. At work I have a workstation 😉

  4. oiaohm says: Scanning is something you have to drop kurkosdr it was a missing feature. Newer Chrome OS it will not be missing.

    kurkosdr desktop Linux and Chrome OS is not isolated from each other. Developer mode on a ChromeOS device enables a lot more.

    kurkosdr lets say for one min in current environment I wanted to release a application for all Desktop Linux Distributions. There is absolutely 1 simple solution release it using Valves Steam Runtime. Non game applications can be sold in the Steam Store. Sorry application developers having issues is their own fault.

    Under windows application developers bundle their libraries. Under Linux developer see the big repository of libraries and go great we don’t have to bundle. Sorry no it don’t work that way. Android officially has a stable ABI as well. There is the LSB as well.

    Now DVD and CD playback here is a laugh Android does that kurkosdr. Android version of VLC in fact. This is the problem lots of Chrome OS weaknesses don’t exist for android. Android has printer and scanner support as well. As a workhorse Android is better equip than Chrome OS.

    Basic office suite, Video editing and Picture editing exists on Android.

    The merge of Android and Chrome OS does a lot. Android has a lot of applications that would be better on larger screens and bigger processors.

    The interesting question is how will Chrome OS implement android application support. Will it be Android application support in Chrome Browser? If so Android Applications would magically become cross platform applications with means to provide to all platforms. Google Play store on Desktop Linux PC would get interesting.

    kurkosdr your fun and games claims have caused you not to in fact check out what Android can do. Google might in fact land the dream of the cross platform applications.

    How Desktop Linux, Chrome OS and Android overlap is interesting. In fact if google pulls of Android applications from Google play in Chrome Browser it will only be a matter of time before Amazon Fire OS applications are also doing the same thing.

    All application stores what to be able to sell to the most number of users.
    Google platform could end up running along size desktop Linux not exactly competing. Filling in weakness the Desktop Linux has.

    The funny thing kurkosdr wants us with pitch forks against google or to give up on desktop Linux. Reasons kurkosdr is not seeing big picture. Big picture is every time google increases chrome os features they increase chrome browser features as well. Linux Desktop has nothing to fear by Chrome OS push and everything to gain.

    Chrome OS merged with Android applications will be quite the little content production OS. Ok not high end professional but general user level for sure. The problem is if this gets to merge into desktop Linux as well.

    Release android application release everywhere could be the future.

  5. dougman wrote, “HP and Xerox have decent support for Linux.”

    Yep. I’ve seen many in schools and they worked out of the box with GNU/Linux because of PostScript. I have a big Xerox machine in my home. It prints only a few pages a week, but it does it first time every time. The only problem I’ve had with is that its native language requires a driver that’s only available on 32bit machines (last time I checked…). I have 11 32-bit machines here but 10 are thin clients… The one with the printer is ancient, “AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 4200+”, but it’s still ticking fine. I guess I could use one of the Atom’s or a thin client as a print server if it ever dies… HP does have a few colour printers that don’t have a driver. I’ve only seen that horror once in more than a decade of teaching in a different school every year.

  6. kurkosdr wrote, “Gotta love how Linux fans consider Chrome OS, Android and Desktop Linux as one thing. That way, you can consider only the advantages of each one and forget about the disadvantages each one has.” and “People buy platforms.”

    In what century are you living? Many people do go for some “brand” but the Digital Divide is being bridged and hundreds of millions are buying IT that works for them and that they can afford:

    In Asia, Android/Linux smartphones are huge with young, poor, novices at IT, many of whom have never owned a legacy PC. The Android/Linux smartphone is their PC.

  7. kurkosdr wrote about, “that important thing called “backwards compatibility””.

    That was important when everyone in the world was afraid to step off the treadmill. This year a billion people picked up Android/Linux smartphones many with absolutely no experience of IT forward, backwards or sideways. People aren’t ruled by fear any longer. They are relishing the pure fun of freedom from monopoly. They’ll take a new interface just to get ahead of the Joneses.

  8. dougman wrote, “80% of people use Email, a few social programs and thats about it.”

    That is a large segment but a bigger segment spends most of the day with either or both browser and media player. Today, I think there are more people who know how to text with their thumbs than type on a keyboard. I taught a few students that skill and they mostly did it for the challenge to run up their “score”, not for productivity. My best typing student, ever, was a lady jock… with no interest in ever being stuck in an office. She played in her finals with a broken ankle… but she typed 80wpm for my class, just to be the best she could be.

  9. kurkosdr wrote, “Users who don’t need *one* of the following: Scanning, JavaSE (for that one important site that needs it), Microsoft Office, Photoshop, proper video editing, reading CDs and DVDs, don’t need a “workhorse platform”, sure. Oops! Turns out such users are rare.”

    That’s nonsense, pulled out of the air or some dark crevice of the mind. I’ve seen thousands who don’t have a scanner and don’t need one. With digital cameras/smartphones, lots of people can snap a photograph of some artifact and they are good to go. I did that often in the North. I think most people have no idea what Java SE is and lots of people have been advised to “turn off Java” in their browsers for security. “That other office suite”? What, for texting and e-mail? Nope. PS? Nope. Only ~100 million use that. Video editing? Ever seen YouTube? Lots of shaky flubs there. Candid is in. If it won’t work on the first or second take, just do another one until you get it right. CDs? That’s so ’90s! We all use USB drives now. In fact IBM found years ago that ~80% of users of workhorse PCs could switch to GNU/Linux for all its advantages with little or no trouble. see Linux Client Migration Cookbook, Version 2: A Practical Planning and Implementation Guide for Migrating to Desktop Linux They categorize PCs in five kinds and most users will fall into the easier categories to migrate with few ties to M$. The guys “stuck” tend to be bosses and managers in large organizations tied into everything. The average joe is a cog in the wheel running just a few applications. Schools, in particular, are like that with just a few people in the office deeply locked in. All the teachers and students are good with GNU/Linux because they do a lot with just a few of the basic desktop applications and GNU/Linux works for them, saving money and giving great performance. It’s that other OS that should justify its use everywhere. That’s not going to happen.

  10. kurkosdr says:


    Good, it was about time you decided to end the conversation. Because actually responding to my previous comment would result in another -larger- wave of advanced stupid.

  11. dougman says:

    Google is for games? Ummmm… you have that backwards. Using Win-Dohs becomes a wack-a-mole game trying to eradicate malware and security flaws, they just keep coming back! Over and over, needlessly restarting and restarting and rebooting over and over.

    Yes I know, change is often difficult but change is always necessary to grow.

    Here are a few examples:

    Kodak –> Digital Camera
    Blockbuster –> Netflix/Redbox
    Tower Records –> iTunes
    Microsoft –> Google–> ChromeOS, Android & Chrome Browser

    Please try harder in your feeble attempts in taking down Linux, the world is waiting.

  12. kurkosdr says:

    Oh, they use a common kernel… One low-level component is the same, yay! Are you really such a total dogbrained idiot or just trolling?

    Oh, and convergence is a scam.

    Back on the topic, because I ‘ve wasted enough time replying to your idiotic statement:

    You have Desktop Windows which is the “workhorse platform” of the house, and the Google Platform which is the “fun and games platform” of the house.

    Users who don’t need *one* of the following: Scanning, JavaSE (for that one important site that needs it), Microsoft Office, Photoshop, proper video editing, reading CDs and DVDs, don’t need a “workhorse platform”, sure. Oops! Turns out such users are rare.

    The assumption that Google’s “fun and games” platform will in any way make Microsoft’s workhorse platform (Windows PC) irrelevant to most users (see second paragraph) is silly. And the assumption that Google’s fun and games platform will help in any way Desktop Linux, a failed “workhorse” platform to compete with WIndows is an even sillier one.

  13. dougman says:

    I say that only 1% of 1% of Win-Dohs users, even know how to use VMWare, MATLAB, Photoshop, Premiere or PowerDirector.

    80% of people use Email, a few social programs and thats about it.

  14. dougman says:

    Yep…people buy platforms and it sure isn’t Win-Dohs is it? Google is achieving convergence, while M$ dreams it.

    Cloud printing needs Windows?…LOL.. actually they just need a connection to the web.

    Quit trying to split hairs, ChromeOS – Android all use a Linux kernel you idiot.

    ChromeOS is 2.6.32
    Android uses 3.4+

  15. kurkosdr says:

    The “different goals” thing is vividly apparent when it comes to that important thing called “backwards compatibility”.

    Google makes sure each version is backwards compatible, at least on a source level. New versions of Android even support the old way 2.x created UIs. API Levels also help backporting of new apps to old versions. Google cares about these because it’s what the market wants.

    Desktop Linux? Random breakages of back compat, no help for backporting, the usual stuff. The latest insanity is the concept of “rolling releases” where stuff breaks unpredictably, so developers can’t even count on their app lasting 2 years (’till the next LTS comes). This is proof the Desktop Linux Community(tm) doesn’t care about the free market and are content with being the 1% OS.

    On the other hand, Google doesn’t want to be a Windows replacement, but complementary to Windows. They don’t care if apps like VMWare, MATLAB, Photoshop, Premiere, PowerDirector etc ever make it to their OSes. They OSes are not OSes to help you do things.

    In fact, most printers need a Windows PC in order to Google Cloud Print. So much for ChromeOS and Android being a windows replacement.

    Different goals…

  16. kurkosdr says:

    Gotta love how Linux fans consider Chrome OS, Android and Desktop Linux as one thing. That way, you can consider only the advantages of each one and forget about the disadvantages each one has.

    Unfortunately, this kind of thinking does not work outside comment sections, because people don’t think this way. People buy platforms.

    Even if ChromeOS and Android are unified, we ‘ll essentially have two platforms, the “Google Platform” and the “Desktop Linux” platform. With linux fans pretending these two are one thing of course.

    When it comes to counting usage share, tout the Google Platform numbers.

    When somebody reminds you that the Google Platform doesn’t help you do things, and can’t do scanning or JavaSE, and has limited support for printers, and is not a true replacement for Desktop Windows, tout the fact Maya, VMWare and Matlab have Desktop Linux versions and how Xerox/HP printers and scanners work in Desktop Linux. The fact Desktop Linux is the eternal 1% OS and will remain so and the fact it is a different platform than Android and Chrome OS is conviniently hidden.

    It’s all “Linux” maaannn… One big happy family. One big happy mutually incompatible family. One big happy mutually incompatible family with different goals.

  17. dougman says:

    HP and Xerox have decent support for Linux.

  18. kurkosdr wrote, “there are things like printing, scanning, the fact some bank and ticket-box sites require Java SE to work that need to be worked out.” and “it doesn’t mean it’s going to win in the second category too,”.

    Strange thing about that “printing” problem. In all my years of printing from GNU/Linux, I’ve only seen two printers that would not work. In my home I have a Xerox multifunction machine that works fine except there is no 64-bit driver. I send files to a 32-bit machine transparently. There isn’t any real problem printing if you use GNU/Linux and have choice in the market.

    The same reason that GNU/Linux won in server, cloud, HPC, small cheap computers also applies to desktop/notebook. The only thing holding back GNU/Linux is space on retail shelves. Where it has space, like Brazil, India, and China, the performance/price is a winner.

  19. oiaohm says:
    kurkosdr one of the applications you listed is already not relevant to a Linux vs Windows on Desktop. Maya is fairly OS neutral. Premiere argument is fairly much Nixed by the existence of lightworks.

    Desktop Windows software is becoming less and less critical heading to irrelevant when it comes to selecting a platform.

    Photoshop is one of the few remaining keystone hold outs without a clear replacement on Linux but its not single platform either.

    What we are watching is simple Cross-platform will live. The non cross-platform will be rendered irrelevant. The age of an application remaining successful and being Windows only is coming to the end.

    Some of your statements kurkosdr just make me wonder what you have been smoking. Chrome OS got local storage in 2013 as per second link.

    I think what you wanted to refer to is in my third link kurkosdr authenticate and store to non google servers. Chrome OS is a growing threat.

    Google has been very clear that is not adding java plugin to Chrome OS. The number of bank and ticket-box sites requiring java are reducing.

    Printing and Scanning most of that will be handled by android support on ChromeOS. Lots of printer and scanner makers have released drivers for Android. Android 4.1 in fact supports third party printer drivers and local printers to be listed so enabling local printing without hacks. Just you have to install your printer makers print server from google play.

    Android on Chrome OS will plug many flaws in Chrome OS.

    Android is far close to a all rounder OS than Chrome OS is. Android you can scan, print and image edit.

    Content consumption only is not where Android has remained. Android is part content creation as well.

    Lets not forget Ubuntu and Jolla are still working on ways to cgroup run Android.

    Android applications will most likely become just another pool of applications like steam is to Linux desktop users. Yes the question is really when will you be able to print on a Linux desktop using Android printer drivers.

    Android and Desktop Linux might be divided at the moment but its not a unbridgeable divide.

    Google recent demands that a Android device cannot be customised by OEM or Carriers in major ways should restart the consumer market a bit again.

  20. kurkosdr says:

    it’s going to win = they are going to win

  21. kurkosdr says:

    Generally, there are two kinds of OSes out there. The “content consumption” OSes, and the “you can do actual work/accomplish things” OSes,

    Just because some Linux flavors (Chrome OS and Android) won in the first category (content consumption only), it doesn’t mean it’s going to win in the second category too, or help the Linux flavors that are supposed to cater to the second category (emphasize “supposed”).

    Essentially, the free market hasn’t given any of the two companies (Google, MS) dominion over both types of OSes. And you know what, I like it that way.

  22. kurkosdr says:

    “Just to reiterate, Win-Dohs do not own any of these markets, and in 5-10 years I can see M$ becoming irrelevant.”

    Just to reiterate, Desktop Windows software that took years or decades to write (Photoshop, Premiere, Maya etc) is NOT going to become irrelevant.

    I think you meant irrelevant in the consumer space. Even so, there are things like printing, scanning, the fact some bank and ticket-box sites require Java SE to work that need to be worked out.

    And that’s assuming Chrome OS gets local storage and proper support for Android apps first.

  23. dougman says:

    Linux, (Android & ChromeOS) moving at speed of Moores Law.

    Just to reiterate, Win-Dohs do not own any of these markets, and in 5-10 years I can see M$ becoming irrelevant.

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