Skip to main content

The PC Ecosystem will be Challenged Again in 2014

When Dell recently announced a low-priced chromebook -- based on Google's Chrome OS -- it became the last major Windows PC maker to embrace the cloudbook phenomenon. Like the stubborn CIO that resisted the cloud computing trend but eventually faced up to the market reality, Dell has finally accepted what others knew to be true -- the glory days of the high-priced PC era are over.

Worldwide personal computer (PC) shipments are expected to fall by -10.1 percent by the end of 2013, slightly below the previous projection of -9.7 percent. That's, by far, the most severe yearly market contraction on record, according to the latest market study by International Data Corporation (IDC).

Interest in PCs has remained limited, leading to little indication of positive growth beyond replacement of existing systems. Total shipments are expected to decline by an additional -3.8 percent in 2014 before turning slightly positive in the longer term.

At these rates, total PC shipments will remain just above 300 million during the forecast period -- barely ahead of 2008 volumes. Even in emerging markets -- once seen as a primary growth engine of the PC market -- shipments are projected to decline in 2014 and later recover by only a few percent.

The commercial PC market is faring somewhat better than the consumer PC market in 2013 with shipments declining by -5 percent year over year compared to nearly -15 percent for consumer.


The relative stability is due to a mix of more stable PC investment planning, a smaller impact from tablets, and to replacements of Windows XP systems before the end of support planned for 2014. However, the long-term outlook for the two markets is not significantly different, with a small decline projected for both consumer and commercial segments in 2014 with near flat growth in the longer term.

"Perhaps the chief concern for future PC demand is a lack of reasons to replace an older system," said Jay Chou, senior research analyst at IDC.

While IDC research finds that the PC still remains the primary computing device – for example, PCs are used more hours per day than tablets or phones – PC usage is nonetheless declining each year as more devices become available.

And despite industry efforts, PC usage has not moved significantly beyond consumption and productivity tasks to differentiate PCs from other devices. As a result, PC lifespans continue to increase, thereby limiting market growth.

Microsoft, and its key channel partners, may find some relief in a very competitive world marketplace. The Windows-based tablet market is expected to grow to 39.3 million units by 2017 -- from less than 7.5 million in 2013 and less than 1 million in 2011. However, relative to a PC market size of roughly 300 million units, these Windows tablets would add just a couple of percentage points a year.

Even so, these new Windows devices are projected to account for 10 percent of a combined PC and Tablet market by 2016 – making them an important potential upside growth opportunity for the struggling traditional Wintel PC ecosystem.

Popular posts from this blog

Why Healthcare and Smart City Apps Drive 5G IoT

Fifth-generation (5G) wireless technology for cellular networks is a successor to fourth-generation (4G) wireless technology. By 2023, Juniper Research anticipates that there will be over 1 billion 5G connections globally. The technology will provide the data infrastructure for the advancement of wireless communications and for new developments in the Internet of Things (IoT) -- including smart cities and healthcare. 5G IoT Market Development According to the latest worldwide market study by Juniper Research, 5G IoT connections will reach 116 million globally by 2026 -- that's increasing from just 17 million connections in 2023. Juniper analysts predict that the healthcare sector applications and government or other smart city services will drive this outstanding 1,100 percent growth over the next three years. Juniper examined 5G adoption across key industry sectors -- such as the automotive, mobile broadband, and smart homes -- and forecasts healthcare and smart cities will accoun

How Savvy Leaders Re-Imagine Work in 2023

As we look to the year ahead, there will be significant challenges and opportunities facing the Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) role. In order to be successful, savvy HR leaders must be prepared to take proactive steps that adapt and evolve. "HR leaders have faced an increasingly unpredictable environment amid many organizations mandating a return to office, permanently higher turnover and burnt out employees," said Emily Rose McRae, senior director at Gartner . HR Innovation Market Development One of Gartner's key predictions for 2023 is that the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation will continue to increase within the enlightened digital workplace. This transition will require HR leaders to develop new skills and competencies in order to effectively manage and lead teams that are increasingly relying on these enabling technologies. Additionally, HR leaders will need to ensure that their organizations are investing in the necessary infrastructure and re

Top 10 CFO Priorities Require Rethinking Finance

The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) role is essential to digital business growth. While CFOs do not get closely involved in the tactical details of the digital transformation of their functions, they still recognize its strategic importance. According to the latest survey by Gartner, CFOs are faced with the challenge of balancing the need for substantive digital business innovation with financial cost control and risk management. "CFOs will be stretched thinly across many activities in 2023. The survey revealed a wide range of actions CFOs plan to either lead or be significantly involved with," said Marko Horvat, vice president at Gartner. Survey Findings: The Top Ten Priorities Cost Optimization - Cost reduction remains the top priority for CFOs as they look for ways to cut costs and improve efficiency in their operations. This includes identifying cost-saving opportunities through automation, outsourcing, and business process improvement. Business Continuity - The global C