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back to article HP elbows Apple off global PC throne

Apple's rise to the summit of the global personal computer market at the end of last year was short lived: HP has regained the top spot in Q1, Canalys figures reveal. A total of 107 million PCs were shipped in the quarter, up 21 per cent. HP, which ceded leadership to the Foxconn-rebrander in Q4, sold 40,000 more units than …

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Le Sigh

Now, I know it's cool to make fun of Apple. But this "Foxconn-rebrander" is wearing a bit thin now, and that's coming from a Windows person. Would Foxconn have made the shiny Apple things, laptops, and Xboxes etc. without any input from their respective companies? There's a clear-as-day difference between a designer and a manufacturer, do keep up.

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Re: Le Sigh

'Foxconn-rebrander' and 'Fondleslab'. Windows, Apple or Stallman person, its inaccurate, old and unfunny.

Bored already.

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Thumb Up

Re: Le Sigh

Its new Register-ese for 'Jobs' Mob'

I've been using Macs for over 28 years, but still this makes me laugh when I read it. It reminds me how some people might see Apple - a company that adds unreasonable markups to hardware that all PC companies have Foxconn produce in China.

RegHacks will get bored of it after a while and there'll be another descriptor to be irritated by.

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Re: Le Sigh

Exactly, it isn't as though HP, Dellapart, Lenovo, etc are making their PCs in socialist Swiss mountain retreats by individual craftsmen. They all use the same manufacturing sweatshops.

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(Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

Re: Le Sigh

Maybe you have to wonder why it bothers you. Do you want your news dictated by Apple - or by people who are completely independent? The reason why I like working for El Reg is that the editorial department is completely insulated from any commercial influence. Can our rivals say the same?

So we could be really nice and kiss up to a 600 billion dollar company. That would be easy. Or we could flippantly poke fun at their manufacturing empire.

The Reg is a broad church - you'll find reviews backing Apple's kit. You'll find editorial knocking their daftness.

Or we could just toe the corporate line. Who (other than Apple) benefits from that?

(Speaking personally.)

C.

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Holmes

Re: Le Sigh

It bothers me because Acer, Apple, Cisco, Dell, HP, Microsoft, Nintendo, Nokia, Samsung, Sony & Toshiba are also 'Foxconn rebranders' but you single out Apple for the slur; perhaps it's you who should be asking why lazily inaccurate journalese is okay on TheReg rather than us questioning our own presupposed love of Apple's corporate cock.

"Jesus Phone" is a funny description of the hype surrounding it, fondleslab is also a typically sharp observation - but the Foxconn/Hon Hai stories are mostly racist bullshit. The name has become synonymous with child labour and prison-like working conditions and the merits and faults in that claim are a long and economically/culturally complex - the company is a personification of a lot of the western fears and prejudices about China. Associating their reputation exclusively with Apple and giving all the other brands a free pass to continue negotiating rock bottom labour costs while turning a blind eye to the actual human cost is both an insult to the seriousness of the problems and lazy journalism from a self-professed biased reporter keen to blame the assumed biases of others rather than confront his own ignorance.

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Re: Le Sigh

When was the last time that El Reg published something negative about Dell (an El Reg ad sponsor)? They are also a Foxconn user. If Dell manages to figure out how to snap an Intel CPU into a socket (with zero unique IP value add), it gets positive coverage.

Here is a quick compare of the last four articles I could find on Dell and Apple. Nearly pure praise for Dell, nearly pure negativity towards Apple.

Dell:

- Dell sneaks out Ivy Bridge special edition Inspirons (positive)

- Dell fending off EMC's maintenance push (positive, apparently Dell is better than EMC at servicing EMC storage.)

- Dell XPS 13 Ultrabook (positive)

- Dell's rapier-thin PowerEdge M420 to render Hobbits? (positive)

Apple:

- Apple blocking Dropbox SDK over in-app buying (negative)

- Kaspersky: Apple security is like Microsoft's in 2002 (negative)

- HP elbows Apple off global PC throne (negative)

- UK ad watchdog probes Apple iPad '4G' boasts (negative)

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Happy

Re: Le Sigh

Ok.. Penny pinching, license dodging, idiot exploiter it is then.

See.. We can totally ignore the fact that a company that skims an unusually high mark-up is using a dodgy company to manufacture it's goods just like you do.

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WTF?

Re: Le Sigh

Jesus, your post makes even less sense than those Apple Store droids when they try to explain why it's actually better to have the *fraction* of software choices on OSX compared to Windows.. .

...seriously, grow up.

PS: and yes, Apple is the most hypocritical, posturing mfr ever, they well deserve all the small kicks in the nuts ElReg regularly performs on Apple here.

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Linux

Re: Le Sigh

"its inaccurate"

Yeah but it's not /that/ inaccurate which is why they keep saying it. Foxconn makes the hardware and then they put the Apple logo on it. Samsung silicon rebrander wouldn't be totally inaccurate either :)

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Good to see HP recovering well, also nice to see the Foxconn-Rebrander knocked off the top of a market for a change.

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"also nice to see the Foxconn-Rebrander knocked off the top of a market for a change." By the other less profitable Foxconn-Rebrander.

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HP profit margins still suck

Unit sales are irrelevant at this point, they still have to figure out how to get beyond 5% margins. Apple runs around 30 - 40% margins because they control their own OS-destiny. HP does not, especially since they gave up on Palm.

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Re: HP profit margins still suck

True, the problem for HP is not that they can't sell PCs, it is that they can't sell PCs with any margin. The problem will likely get worse as Asus, Acer, and other Asian competitors enter the enterprise market.

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Megaphone

Re: HP profit margins still suck

> Apple runs around 30 - 40% margins because they control their own OS-destiny. HP does not, especially since they gave up on Palm.

Not entirely. Its also because Apple sell to individuals who are typically only buying one item and are thus less price sensitive and the purchasers are typically the users, so having nice aesthetics is part of the purchase decision.

For the life of me, I cannot understand why HP haven't hired so design people and replicated iLife and made their consumer hardware a bit special. Decent software, decent hardware and windows for games, cloud services... Just change the logo to something cool and profit! Why is it that the software from hardware manufacturers (and phone manufacturers) is rubbish?

Oi, HP! Get your socks on with ARM, talk to Valve, do something cool. How about a "sleep" mode which drops your clock-speed and shuts off some cores and the graphics card, so I can leave my games machine on as a server?

Hellooooo, is anyone out there?

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Meh

iPad?

The iPad is a PC now is it? Given that it is just a large iPhone without the phone bit, one could then, by logical extension, infer that an iPhone is also a PC, albeit a small one with extra comms capabilities. Going further, we could postulate that if the iPhone is a PC, then so are Android phones & tablets and Window Phone devices. Possibly even Symbian phones.

Ipads are PCs? Bollocks.

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Re: iPad?

The point is that iPads are being used to do nearly all the tasks that consumers, education and enterprise did use PC's for, so they are competing for the same sale in most cases. Programmers and other heavyweight content creators will continue to use a traditional PC or Mac, but they are numerically a minority.

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Meh

Re: iPad?

Sorry? Are you saying that someone who would have bought a PC would now purchase an iPad *instead* of a PC? Really?

I'd argue that the tasks iPad users perform on their devices are far closer to what they do on a smartphone than what they do on a PC.

Didn't Apple themselves admit the iPad was "a completely new class of device"? So....not a PC, then.

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Headmaster

Re: iPad?

Last time I checked PC stood for Personal Computer.

I can't think of anything much more personal than a smart phone or a Tablet. They are also undeniably computers.

Many desktop computers by comparison are not Personal Computers - simply because they are not used or owned by one person - they could be classed as workstations or some similar terminology....

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Anonymous Coward

Re: iPad?

I'd be more convinced about the iPad being a PC if you could change the operating system on it or write software with it. Even my daughter's 350 quid Acer can run Windows, Linux, or BSD or use Eclipse or Visual Studio. The Raspberry Pi is a PC, but the iPad (and other tablets) are just appliances. You can't argue "it has a CPU so it's a PC", that would qualify my sat-nav and my washing machine as PCs.

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WTF?

Re: iPad?

"The point is that iPads are being used to do nearly all the tasks that consumers, education and enterprise did use PC's for, so they are competing for the same sale in most cases."

I always wonder where do people pick up these uberly idiotic, clueless and totally false BS...

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WTF?

Re: iPad?

When I think I have seen all the idiocies of Apple's user hell there's always something even more retarded appears....

"I can't think of anything much more personal than a smart phone or a Tablet."

(...)

Many desktop computers by comparison are not Personal Computers - simply because they are not used or owned by one person - they could be classed as workstations or some similar terminology.."

SO let me get this straight: a machine shared at home by the family it's not personal enough to be counted as a PC but an oversized smartphone without phone feature, Flash or free data transfer is a PC for you....

...just PRICELESS.

As a side note: I noticed that the number of shockingly stupid, utterly clueless, sometimes simply downright moronic posts (eg this one above) is always highest in comments about a story involving iPad and second highest involving Apple (w/o iPad explicitly mentioned) - coincidence? I doubt it...

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Re: iPad?

I think there is a pretty large population that bought or will buy a tablet instead of a new PC. It isn't as though they will replace their PC completely with a tablet, but they will forgo the purchase of a new PC, keep using their older PC for word processing, spreadsheet and whatnot and buy a tablet instead. As everyone already has a PC with perfectly adequate specs for the applications they are running, there is no need to run out and buy a new one until their current PC physically breaks.

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WTF?

Re: iPad?

To quote the sadly missed genius, Adams: "If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird of the family anatidae on our hands".

Defining a product by what how it is constructed is basically pointless - the important thing to almost all consumers is what it does, and how you interact with it. If a car manufacturer start selling a model with 6 wheels, or with a joystick rather than a steering wheel, that doesn't mean said model isn't a car. Likewise, the device I read El Reg, post comments, listen to spotify, watch iPlayer, send/receive email, process photos, present slides, do real, proper work in SAS JMP and TIBCO Spotfire (and so on ad nauseum) is to me a functional facsimile of a PC. So why quibble about the label??

What we have here is a Duck. (Except it isn't... it's an iPad)

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Re: iPad?

I don't see why your comments need to be quite so offensive to be honest. Welcome to the world of forums where people have different views to you. Just because you've a preconception in your mind as to what a PC is in your mind doesn't mean it's correct. Open your mind a bit.

For reference at least one edition of the Commodore 64 had "Personal Computer" stamped on the front of it and yet it bares little resemblance to what is currently considered a PC. It definitley didn't run Windows or Linux! Nor was it very upgradable.

A smartphone is a personal computer. A home computer used by different members of a family is obviously less personal but I guess it depends on how encompassing you want to make the word 'personal'.

Many of these tablet and phone devices you can plug into large screens, attach a wireless keyboard too - and do pretty much everything a desktop machine can do...Why does form factor or the type of memory it have suddenly affect whether it's a personal computer or not?

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FAIL

Re: iPad?

"I think"

FYI that's the operative word there... and yes, you are wrong.

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Re: iPad?

I don't like tablets or smartphones (my phone is technically a "smart" one, but it's an old Symbian model that I bought for the full keyboard), but I have to wonder just how Jim Coleman defines "PC". As Mr ChriZ points out, smartphones are definitely personal, and they're definitely computers. They're far more capable computers than the PCs of the 1970s and 1980s - albeit with worse keyboards.

I have to wonder what's at stake here. "PCs" are a huge range of devices, used for a huge range of tasks. It's hardly surprising that many users find they can accomplish their chosen tasks just as well using something other than a traditional desktop or laptop machines. Or that other users (such as myself) find they cannot.

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Devil

Tablets.. PCs.. Tablets.. PCs..

When will someone actually acknowledge that a fondeslab of any brand is not exactly a PC?

Again another sensationalist report that tries to bundle two different technologies under the title of "Personal Computer".

Good to see our friends at ELReg (AKA the ZDNet News republishers) have another stab at one of the FoxConn rebranders

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Silver badge
Boffin

Re: Tablets.. PCs.. Tablets.. PCs..

"....a fondeslab of any brand is not exactly a PC?...." Well, only if you look at it in hardware terms. If you look at it in terms of what the user does with it, then a lot of fondleslabs are bought for tasks that people previously did on their traditional Wintel PCs. Outside of the workplace, many PC users don't do anything productive on their PCs other than the odd minor document, they just consume (browsing, listening to music, reading Facebook, etc, etc), it is only a minor slice of us PC users that do anything like coding on our home PCs. So, yes, for many a fondleslab is chosen instead of a traditional PC and use as a PC.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Tablets.. PCs.. Tablets.. PCs..

@Matt Bryant

So, yes, for many a fondleslab is chosen instead of a traditional PC

more like

So, yes, for many a fondleslab is chosen as well as a traditional PC

I'm willing to bet a large proportion of tablet owners in general already have a laptop or desktop and that a huge proportion of iPad owners have made a space between their iPhones and Macbooks on the bedside table for their iPads.

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Thumb Up

Re: Tablets.. PCs.. Tablets.. PCs..

Upvote about the Reg as republishers. Where's the kettle icon?

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Re: Tablets.. PCs.. Tablets.. PCs..

There must be something strange going on with Earth's gravitation pull because I completely agree with Matt. Yes, a tablet is not the same form factor as a PC. It doesn't matter. It is all about what device people are using to perform personal computing tasks. Most of the tasks people did on a PC are moving, or have moved, to tablet or a smartphone (e.g. e-mail, browsing, social media, videos, typing nonsense on El Reg, etc). Unless you are doing some serious content creation, you are probably using either a smartphone or a tablet. It doesn't mean you do not need a PC, but, as I wrote above, you probably will be willing to hold on to an older PC longer and not go all out when buying a new PC as you are just using it for heavy creative work.

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Boffin

Re: Re: Tablets.. PCs.. Tablets.. PCs..

".....I'm willing to bet a large proportion of tablet owners in general already have a laptop or desktop...." Agreed, but now take the idea a bit further. The next time that average user thinks of an upgrade they can shell out £500+ for a low-powered PC (or a lot more for a proper PC or powerful laptop), or they can but the latest iPad for roughly the same price, and do most of what they want to do. Remember, most consumers have finite cash resources and would avoid spending mroe than they have to. This is the argument that has led many to declare the home PC is dead, not because we don't have lots of PCs now, but because future purchasing choices may mean more people buying tablets than PCs.

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Windows 8

With Windows 8, there's a danger that Microsoft offers their installed base a clear future they don't want, and for the first time ever, the alternative looks a safer, more mainstream option. Windows 8 could end up being Microsoft's confession that it can't catch up with Apple. It'll be interesting to watch. Could it really be so much better than Apple that it matters?

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Anonymous Coward

And now for something completely different

Um well accept not really different.

HP gets to crow a bit for selling more PCs. (PC is anything that you use by the way, personal computer, it is your intiment contact with computational resources. And does not require a hardwire terminal to a central device (large format server, mainframe etc).

Of all the readers of this article do you do more than play games, read/write email, created/edit documents, spreadsheets, trade stocks, update social media accounts. If not then you can use an iPAD for all of that - does it make it a personal computer. Yes unless you are one of the many Adults sitting at the kids table in your local apple store answering email or share your a communal device for all technology interaction.....

With WiFI or 3g/LTE equiped models, Voice over IP can be your phone. WiFi might even be a tad more reliable for mobile calls than your local service provider.

Foxconn rebrander? - not sure if that is an issue or not...I am it's not issue. As long as you like your personal computer device -the way you like it - and as long as you continue to procure from companies that are big proponents of capital markets and also potentially answer to stock holders.

Then a lot of your products are going to be built by a few companies for the lowest price possible using the greatest number of low-cost humans to perform the work.

For Apple - this means a product that the capital market has determined is in demand and they continue to make massive margins on all products.

For HP - that means giving up margin to try and make it on revenue of volume sales.

Either way shut-up

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Anonymous Coward

Re: And now for something completely different

"For HP - that means giving up margin to try and make it on revenue of volume sales."

Yep. I saw an awful lot of HP cashback deals over the last few months, and I took advantage of some of those myself. HP wouldn't have come into the equation for me without those discounts.

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Netbooks

I wonder if netbook sales would bounce back if they went back to the original intention of small, cheap computers?

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Bronze badge
FAIL

Apple's pathetic practice of cooking the books...

...is downright embarrassing now: iPads counted as PCs?

I mean it was already pathetic when for a decade Steve "Freedom From Porn" Jobs was hiding real sales numbers behind OS X or iOS platform numbers but this is beyond that, it's not even pathetic but rather embarrassing, ridiculously dumb now...

...oh well, after all I guess it's Apple, the loving home of the dumb and clueless.

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Silver badge
Stop

Reading comprehension is a problem for you?

It isn't Apple who has been doing the classifying, it's Canalys.

Now if you're too stupid to work that out then you shouldn't be calling into question the intelligence of others.

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Bronze badge
Angel

Re: Reading comprehension is a problem for you?

Since you are obviously clueless about the story I was referring to how about learning about it first and only producing stupid posts second, huh? For starter you could download all 10-K reports of the past decade and you will clearly see just where TH analysts are getting their info/classification/etc from...

... FWIW it's always dangerous to speak out of your bottom and the same time trying to lecture others about calling people stupid - it can blow back pretty quickly. :P

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Stop

You want to keep digging there?

Apple have never reported Mac sales as including iPads, iPhones or iPod touches. The argument over whether or not to include tablets in the PC numbers is one between the analyst community, not Apple, so trying to blame them for how a 3rd party company chooses to interpret the data is the height of stupidity.

Subsequently trying to claim that this wasn't what you meant, that you were talking about some other story, that 10Ks somehow mix up the numbers (they don't), and that yar boo sucks I must be stupid for thinking otherwise does you no favours.

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Re: You want to keep digging there?

Exactly, Apple aren't the company who refuses to report official sales data for "competitive reasons".

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