How keen are you on your tablet? Do you tend to use it more often than your PC or are you more of a hardcore desktop/laptop fan? If the IDC Worldwide Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker is to be believed, tablet shipments are set to surpass PC shipments in the fourth quarter of 2013. Tablets are selling like hotcakes.
What a year it's been for Lenovo. In the second quarter, two independent market research firms -- International Data Corporation (IDC) and Gartner -- crowned Lenovo king of PCs in terms of shipments, and the company continues to find ways to flip a profit in what it considers a "tough" market. Lenovo's revenue for its first fiscal quarter ended June 30, 2013 was $8.8 billion, a 10 percent jump compared to a year ago, while earnings jumped 23 percent year-over-year to $174 million. It wasn't all because of traditional PC sales, though.
If you think dealing with bloatware on a new OEM system is a pain in the backside, imagine buying a PC only to find out that it's infected with malware...straight from the factory! Apparently that's something PC shoppers need to be worried about these days, according to an investigation conducted by Microsoft's Digital Crimes Unit (DCU). The investigation and subsequent sting operation, codenamed "Operation b70," found that several new systems sold in China had malicious software pre-installed.
There was a time when PCs practically sold themselves, but that was before everyone started crowing about the tough economic landscape and other factors that, as Dell explains, makes growing a PC business "challenging," a word the OEM used when describing its second quarter financial results. Amid slumping sales and declining profits, Dell said it's in the process of transforming its business with a clear strategy focused on long-term results.
In a repeat of last year’s back-to-school promotion, Microsoft last month began offering a free Xbox 360 to U.S. and Canadian students buying a new Windows PC. But what about those students whose allegiances lie elsewhere in the HD video game console wars? They need not worry, for there’s a deal for them too.
In a questions and answer session at the HP Summit, HP CEO Leo Apotheker dropped some interesting bits of news about HP's upcoming WebOS offerings. Perhaps the most notable announcement is that the HP TouchPad will be out in June of this year. There were fear that it would not appear until later in the summer. Additionally, HP Is forging ahead with WebOS for your PC.
Gartner, Inc’s gloomy forecast of a 5.6% decline in PC sales for the third quarter of 2009 didn’t quite pan out. Instead, Gartner is reporting a modest 0.5% increase, with 80.9 million units shipped worldwide. Sales were driven by the consumer market, with its insatiable demand for low-priced mobile PCs (i.e., netbooks).
Global leaders were Hewlett-Packard, with a 19.9% share, followed by Acer (15.4%) and Dell (12.8%). Dell was, however, tops in the U.S., with a 26.2% share of the market, followed closely by Hewlett-Packard with 25.7%. Acer finished out the top three with a 13.9% share.
Gartner predicts that the introduction of Windows 7 will have little impact on PC sales for the 4th quarter. According to Gartner’s Mikako Kitagawa: “Recent OS releases have not been a growth driver in the PC market.” But, Windows 7 could be a catalyst for an overdue hardware replacement cycle. Ms. Kitagawa expects some interest in hardware upgrades from consumers and business through the holiday season, and an impact in 2010 as the corporate market begins to react to the release of Windows 7.
Acer owes its rapid strides in the PC market to its success in the netbook segment. Now it expects to benefit from the launch of Windows 7 and a resurgent global economy. Acer chairman JT Wang is confident that the company will meet its revenue forecast for Q4 2009. The company is expected to register a 10% growth in consolidated revenues during the ongoing quarter.
He believes that the entry of Hewlett-Packard and Toshiba into the ultra-thin notebook segment is bereft of seriousness, and this very lack of sincerity is preventing Intel’s ultra-thin notebook technology from taking off.
Although, earlier this year, the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology mandated that the vaguely named “Green Dam Youth Escort” web filtering software be bundled with all new PCs, including the imported ones, it later postponed the July 1 deadline before eventually scrapping its edict last month.
However, it is still mandatory for those administrating public use computers to have Green Dam Youth Escort installed on such machines. But one unnamed Chinese high school is said to have flouted the government’s order by deleting the software from its computers. It is not often that China offers obeisance to outside pressure.
It looks like Intel's Atom platform and the whole netbook craze can only do so much to stave off slumping sales. According to market analysts Gartner Group, worldwide spending on IT is expected to drop 6 percent from 2008 to $3.2 trillion in 2009. While $3.2 trillion might not sound like much to sneeze at, the 6 percent slide is almost twice as much as Gartner predicted during the first quarter.
The biggest casualty in IT spending comes to computing hardware, which is expected to drop by 16 percent. IT services and telecom spending are on track for 5.6 percent and 4.6 percent drops, while Gartner predicts software spending growth to slow by 1.6 percent.
According to Gartner, lingering global IT budget cuts and the rising U.S. dollar are both to blame.