Skip to main content

Intel Viiv and AMD Live Won't Drive PC Sales

Business Week reports that seeking a marketing wedge amid a download-crazy consumer populace, Intel rolled out the 'Viiv' label after an overhaul of its branding strategy late last year following the ascendancy of Chief Executive Paul Otellini.

It remains to be seen how strongly the Viiv value proposition is resonating with consumers, but it's apparently not a big hit with the one major PC vendor, Dell. The company, a newly minted customer of Intel rival Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), announced new machines recently sporting AMD's competing media PC platform, AMD 'Live,' though it also continues to sell some Viiv systems.

Luckily for Intel, Viiv has made inroads with HP, the company that sells more Media Center PCs than anyone else. Its retail lineup includes two Intel Viiv machines, two AMD Live machines, and one that uses neither.

Viiv also could benefit from rising demand for PCs loaded with Microsoft's Media Center software, which are finally gaining traction after a slow start back in 2002. Researcher IDC expects nearly 6 million Media Center PCs to sell by the end of the year -- nearly twice as many as in 2004. IDC doesn't say how many of those will include Viiv or Live, and so I'm left wondering.

And, while that segment of the business shows signs of growing faster than the overall consumer PC market, it still represents tepid demand. IDC analyst David Dauod says 6.6 percent of all PCs sold to consumers this year will be Media Center PCs.

Apparently Intel Viiv and AMD Live do have some things in common -- both appear to be rather heavy on technology and branding content, but very light on meaningful new feature differentiation that enables user-friendly system design innovations.

Beyond the extra processing power, 'remote control ready' capability, and 'bundled software' that is freely available directly from the source (Pure Networks, Orb Networks, etc.), it's not clear to me exactly where there's value-added benefit that is worthy of a new Intel or AMD brand name extension. Neither company seems to have attempted tackling the already known multimedia PC connectivity, configuration or usability problems that exist.

Therefore, I seriously question if both company's marketing efforts have oversold the brand promise -- meaning, will a mainstream consumer really gain any advantage of device or software simplicity, by design? If not, then why on earth wasn't product design enhancement given a higher priority?

Moreover, will systems built around either of these two chipsets result in fewer puzzled mainstream consumers making frequent help requests to a PC manufacturer's technical support centers? Based upon the PC system designs that I’ve seen thus far, I for one am not convinced.

Popular posts from this blog

How Data and Analytics Drive Business Growth

Senior executives in the world’s largest and most complex organizations will develop the insights required to achieve lasting Digital Transformation. Gartner has identified a model for digital business growth that binds together data, analytics, technology, and forward-looking transformation capabilities. The Gartner Research Board said that data and analytics (D&A) leaders are uniquely positioned to drive this strategic organizational change that will make their companies behave like 'digital native' leaders.  "The most advanced and successful D&A leaders are driving new opportunities to use digital capabilities – often data and analytics products – to capture value. Those opportunities should directly connect to the business priorities," said Mario Faria, vice president at Gartner . Digital Business Market Development At the same time, some leaders are using digital and D&A to create whole new business models. These leaders – which Gartner named the CxO

Anywhere, Anytime Workplace Demand for SASE

The ongoing adoption of flexible working models within the enterprise market has significant implications for typical IT organizations that must now support knowledge workers and front-line employees that operate outside the corporate network perimeter. The global COVID-19 pandemic created IT networking and security challenges. The expansion of the distributed workforce, an increasing reliance on cloud computing infrastructure, and the requirement to securely connect online employees -- wherever they choose to work, at any given moment in time. Legacy IT solutions that have rigid network underlays and a requirement for on-premises infrastructure cannot adequately deal with these trends. This 'Anywhere, Anytime Workplace' led to demand for new Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) solutions, with networking and security delivered as-a-service. Anywhere, Anytime Workplace Market Development   Although converging networking and security capabilities offer enterprises a promising solut

The Metaverse Raised Virtual Reality Interest

After years of slow growth and limited use cases, the Virtual Reality (VR) market is now forecast to grow significantly over the next five years. Consumer interest in VR games and media continues to grow after the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated activity. At the same time, the need for employee enablement and immersive content within the enterprise environment remains strong. According to the latest market study by ABI Research, over 90 million Head Mounted Display (HMD) shipments in 2027 will drive total VR market revenues to reach over $95 billion across hardware, software, and services. Virtual Reality Market Development "The virtual reality market is no stranger to false starts, with identifiable efforts in VR dating back to the 1980s and 1990s. While the technology never found purchase results, the increased capability of VR hardware combined with the demand for immersive content in numerous markets, presents a significant opportunity," says Eric Abbruzzese, research direc