Laptop Makers are Feeling Skeptical About Convertible Models Heading into 2014

Paul Lilly

Vendors don't want to get stuck with a bunch of 2-in-1 devices

There's still no clear cut indication from consumers whether or not hybrid notebooks that also function as tablets are all that desirable compared to keeping the form factors separate. That being the case, notebook vendors are reportedly having cold feet when it comes to stockpiling 2-in-1 devices, fearing that weak sales could leave them with a bunch of unsold inventory needing to be written off.

To make matters more of a gamble, some peripherals are device specific, such as keyboards. That means that if a particular 2-in-1 device fails to drum up sales, vendors will also be stuck with a pile of related peripherals. This is something vendors fear, Digitimes says .

These 2-in-1 devices accounted for less than 10 percent of the mobile device category in 2013. Intel reckons the category the will increase 10-fold in 2014, but notebook vendors aren't as confident.

Interestingly enough, these vendors don't seem as reluctant to embrace the 2-in-1 systems that function as both an all-in-one (AIO) and tablet, otherwise known as convertible AIOs. It was reported back in October that first-tier vendors other than Apple are getting ready to promote convertible AIO systems in a big way, with volume shipments expected to take place in the second quarter of 2014.

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