back to article PC sales to fall and fall and fall and fall and fall for the next five years

Analyst firm IDC has issued a forecast for PC sales from 2016 to 2021, and the news is bad: shipments slipping from 2016's 435.1 million units to 398.3 million in 2021, for five-year compound annual growth rate of -1.7 per cent. “Shipments could pick up if accelerators like economic conditions, adoption of gaming, VR, and …

  1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

    Developing world

    Thing is if you were to only have *one* computing device, you would get a smartphone. Basically it works as a phone, can be used on wifi (i.e. broadband) or without (using mobile data, probably at some cost), and does most of what folk want from a PC (messaging, web look-up, pointless social media, etc) as well mobile-specific stuff like satnav functionality. And it fits easily in your pocked/handbag/sporran/etc.

    Sure other forms are better in many ways, such as screen size or easier typing, etc. But if you have limitations on your budget a phone seems the way to go.

    1. Korev Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Developing world

      Excellent point.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

      Developing world here. Most people have more than one device, or share multiple devices within each household etc. So that statement isn't accurate anymore (South / Central America).

      But consider this, between 2007-2012 devices such as netbooks running XP were cheap. Whereas the minimum price for an equivalent Win10 laptop today is just plain nuts! There's no compelling reason to buy PC's at that price level. (FX is a factor).

      The tech leap from Win98r2 to XP saw gains in stability / capability. Whereas Vista disappointed and Win7 was only an incremental improvement over XP to most users. So what now? Win8 / Win10 are considered unpredictable / unnecessary. That's without consideration of the Privacy and UI changes. Windows is more about style / security and not substance / functionality now...

      So what's going on up there in Silicon Valley? Its like the PC makers are too busy reading MSM / Gartner / IDC reports, instead of asking people on the ground what they really want! For example Ultrabooks were something that were championed 4/5 years ago to revitalize the market. That's great in places like SF to NY maybe. But the rest of the world just want simple budget tech. What was wrong with the old cheap netbooks? Nothing! That's where tech companies / corporations are totally out of touch! But hey what's new, look at overpriced Smart TV and IoT!

      1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

        Re: asking people on the ground ...

        I am sure they ask, but the purpose is not to deliver what people want. The idea is to divide the market into segments and ensure that each segment can only get what they need by paying what they can barely afford.

        That used to work great until a bottom of the range PC met the vast majority of people's needs. The next plan was to convince rich twits that they needed ultra-thin. Apparently not enough people are falling for ultra-fragile and the rest have been given a more suitable alternative.

        As CPUs are more than fast enough, PC manufacturers have to keep hoping they will find some weird form factor to justify their margins. It is that or admit that a Raspberry Pi can handle email, internet banking and fartbook.

        1. cd / && rm -rf *

          Re: asking people on the ground ...

          "convince rich twits that they needed ultra-thin"

          "a Raspberry Pi can handle email, internet banking and fartbook"

          Fabulous. With an attitude like that, you should be writing for el Reg regularly.

      2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

        Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

        Laptops have taken over our office for desktop computing but the mail server, DNS, accounting etc all remain on PC's. Tablets suck and phones only last a couple of years before they are obsolete and the batteries either die or catch fire.

        Laptops and small form-factor servers are the future.

      3. Missing Semicolon Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

        Yes. When the entry price for a "computer" went up from $150-$200 to $400-$500, people stopped buying them in quantity.

        No OS nowadays (even Linux Mint XFCE) will work on as much computer power as you can buy for $150. It seems that the application UI toolkits, and excessive shiny have ensured that you will always need a GHz processor with GB of RAM to do anything.

        Which seems odd, to those of us that used to browse the web, read email, and write documents on a AMD K6/2 450 with 32M RAM.....

        1. Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge
          Paris Hilton

          Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

          Funny: in Holland the entry price for a 'desktop' was about Eur. 1500 in 1980 (not adjusted for inflation), gradually slipped to Eur. 1000 and quickly dropped to around Eur. 500 around 2001 and rose a bit since then. Home computers were cheaper, from Commodore 64 to Nintendo Wii.

          $ 150 will buy you a rasperry PI with maybe a second hand keyboard and monitor (I guess it includes 1 GHz CPU and 1 GB of RAM). Linux will run nicely on it. FreeDOS needs Intel/AMD inside.

      4. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Mushroom

        Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

        "So what's going on up there in Silicon Valley? Its like the PC makers are too busy reading MSM / Gartner / IDC reports, instead of asking people on the ground what they really want!"

        In Silly Valley they're isolated in their bubble community of wacky-weed addicts without a clue as to what the rest of the world is like. Their politics, attitudes, and marketing proves it.

        Win-10-nic is the #1 reason why PC sales slump. #2 is the lack of "new computer performs better than old computer". Why replace something that works with something that works about the same (but has Win-10-nic on it) ???

        Predictable. Predictable. Predictable. It's so damn obvious I don't know what else I can say without a cluebat and a cat5-o-nine-tails to emphasize the point by BEATING IT into those clueless douchebags that seem to be "in charge".

      5. Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge
        Coat

        Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

        In 1945, IBM estimated the world demand was about 5 computers. Today, the world is so much divided politically, that even a dozen computers longer suffice, even if each were bigger than Google's current largest data center.

        ...............

        Since the number of actual PCs shipped is not about to grow, this means that the unit price must increase by some 15 % annually to meet industry's profit demands (for PCs of equal manufacturing cost, rather than the fastest 'threadripper' on offer).

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

          In 1945, IBM estimated the world demand was about 5 computers.

          I really would like to see the end of people perpetuating this urban myth. What Watson had said was they expected to sell 5 machines on that particular sales junket.

          Granted, these days there's not likely a market for 5 ***IBM*** machines worldwide.

          1. LaeMing Silver badge

            Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

            Also, I imagine if computer technology was still at the price/performance levels of the time, we may only want 5 of the things!

            1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

              Re: "Developing world - if you were to only have *one* computing device"

              If I were castaway on a desert island the desktop would probably be best as you could probably get it to stay afloat longer AND you could wave the keyboard around to attract aircraft's attention. (Please can I have one of those clickety-click metal-base keyboards, so that I can use it to reflect the sun onto the aircraft?).

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Developing world

      Yes, any business needs can be easily fulfilled by a smartphone.... in many situations a dumbphone and a laptop may make more sense.

      I'm afraid it's the developed world which is obsessed with showing off on FB, and watching cat videos on YT...

  2. ratfox Silver badge

    Astrology

    I find claiming to predict for 2021 is a bit silly. I bet that different analysts have wildly different predictions. But hey, everybody has to earn money some way, right?

    1. Wade Burchette

      Re: Astrology

      IDC and Gartner's have a successful prediction rate of somewhere around 0%. Companies like IDC show that you can almost always be wrong and people will still pay for your future prediction. Why can't I get paid to do that? Wake me up when these people are actually right.

      Well, I predict that PC sales will increase. I base my prediction on a few things: (1) IDC and Gartner's already said PC sales would fall, and they have a poor track record of successful predictions. So if every instinct they have is wrong, the opposite must be true. (2) Tablets have already reached market saturation and most people are only going to replace, not splurge. (3) Unfortunately, Windows 7 machines will wear out soon and require replacing with horrible horrible Windows 10 machines. The vast majority of people do not know Linux even exists and do not want to pay a Mac premium.

      1. TheElder

        Re: Astrology

        I never believed in the Astrological "prediction" but then I stumbled on this when I was looking up Cereal Killers.

        It was my birthday recently.

        Personality

        Perfectionists of sorts, individuals born on August XXXXX are versatile folks with a penchant for creativity and ingenuity. Ruled by the planet Mercury, the ruler of the zodiacal group, these people have an analytical mind and a rational approach to life. This practicality often overshadows the caring, sensitive and compassionate temperament of these people. The observant nature, charming personality and sophisticated taste of these people make them unique and distinctive. Adding to this is their generous and sincere nature that makes these individuals have a positive and productive outlook towards life and people. August XXXXX individuals have great communication skills and are gifted speakers.

        1. Terry 6 Silver badge

          Re: Astrology

          As it happens, for my big August birthday I got a new laptop. Old one was creaking and falling apart. Which was the only good reason to replace it. As old as it was ( by computer standards) it could still manage pretty much everything I needed and was still working totally reliably. And I'd be very surprised if there was a high proportion of the population, individuals or businesses, who could make a case to replace a computer before the external bits (battery, connectors, USB slots etc) started to fail, like mine. And frankly, how many ordinary people ever need a proper computer anyway. We now have tablets and phones that do all the stuff that most people want to do. If the smartphone had somehow been invented first the home computer and even small business machine would probably never made to the market,

          So that prediction may turn out to be correct - if only by accident.

      2. Mikel

        Re: Astrology

        Gartner and IDC have been OVER estimating future PC sales for a decade. You're right that they're always wrong, but they're uniformly wrong on the high side. That makes your prediction that this time they will reverse the polarity of their reality distortion field and err in the opposite direction quite hilarious. There is absolutely no reason to belive next year is any different from the ten before it in this regard.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So my prediction of five years ago

    still stands.,

    Tablets and mobiles (effectively small tablets) are doing 80% of the heavy lifting these days.

    Wait until you get a corporate-friendly stable version of Android (which probably WILL be 2021 ....)

    1. Hans Neeson-Bumpsadese Silver badge

      Re: So my prediction of five years ago

      Wait until you get a corporate-friendly stable version of Android (which probably WILL be 2021 ....)

      Even if/when that corporate-friendly version of Android comes along, the I'll bet you a pound to a penny that the corporates won't use it. It's not about the OS, it's about the applications - the OS is just a platform to run those on.

      In the corporate world, there is still a *lot* invested in thick/non-web applications. The costs associated with migrating not only the OS, but all of the applications, would be very high compared to what the business gets out of it.

      In terms of bottom line benefit from making the move to Android....there isn't one.

      1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

        Re: So my prediction of five years ago

        In terms of bottom line benefit from making the move to Android....there isn't one.

        Maybe not directly. But rephrased as benefit from moving from PCs to mobile devices and you'll find lots of companies actively looking at this. Companies are already moving from owning PC infrastructure to renting it which means they can reduce their IT maintenance budget. They might still run Exchange and Office but these are already accessible to non-PCs.

  4. J. R. Hartley Silver badge

    Useless

    What is the point of PCs these days? I built an absolute top of the range beast 3 years ago. Triple monitors, the lot. I use it maybe once a month to fill out my overtime sheet in Word.

    Looks good though.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Useless

      Each to his own, live an let live. I need at least 2 monitors to work, and a PC to drive them. You clearly don't. Just cos you don't doesn't mean there's 'no point' in PCs. I couldn't do my job with a phone or tablet.

      I was by the way, really please that you found your book that one time. I'm actually quite surprised you are still alive, let alone still doing overtime : you looked bloody ancient in the early 1980's.

      1. AMBxx Silver badge

        Re: Useless

        A sports car would be no use to me - I have 2 dogs and carry lots of stuff around. Doesn't mean it's no good for anybody else.

        As for my Land Rover - great for me out here in the sticks, wouldn't want to drive it around the city though.

        It comes down to requirements, not religion.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Useless

          "As for my Land Rover - great for me out here in the sticks, wouldn't want to drive it around the city though."

          I'm not sure about the latter. When driving in central London I always thought I'd rather have been in an early Land Rover showing all the scars of 40 years use on a farm. The locals who weren't scared off would just have bounced off & what's another scratch or patch of paint?

      2. J. R. Hartley Silver badge

        Re: Useless

        That fucking book. I typed that on a Commodore PET that I stroked from one of my old fishing buddies. That's how I made my foray into bespoke enterprise IT solutions. I never liked flyfishing anyway.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: Useless

      "I use it maybe once a month to fill out my overtime sheet in Word."

      obviously you're one of those "content consumer" 4-inch types. enjoy your mediocre computing experience.

      1. J. R. Hartley Silver badge

        Re: Useless

        What?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Useless

          He's impugning (sorry: dissing) your manhood

          1. J. R. Hartley Silver badge

            Re: Useless

            I can assure you there's no problem in that particular department. I'm a big hit on Grindr.

            1. WolfFan Silver badge
              Gimp

              Re: Useless

              I can assure you there's no problem in that particular department. I'm a big hit on Grindr.

              I take it that you're a bottom, eh?

              1. J. R. Hartley Silver badge

                Re: Useless

                A power bottom

                1. LaeMing Silver badge
                  Boffin

                  Re: Useless

                  For content-consumption a phone/tablet is probably best in most cases. If you are actually creating content, you might want a desktop (or at least a laptop).

    3. TheElder

      Re: Useless

      I am looking forward to this. The beast I built is about 4 years old. There should be discounts on everything.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Newer chromebooks with access to the android google play store may or may not make a difference, especially if you already have an android based mobile phone. IMHO chromebooks need more USB ports and variations of ports before I even think of purchasing one.

    For sure, W10 has not helped the sector and is slowly killing off next-gen enthusiasts with their framework business model, exclusions of CPU's on unsupported OSes, untested patches etc..

  6. JimmyPage Silver badge
    Stop

    PC plugging shills

    seems to be a lot of shills on this board today, downvoting the statements of the bleeding obvious.

    Is this the new paradigm ? Just outshout news you don't like ?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      RE: Is this the new paradigm ?

      Clearly.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: RE: Is this the new paradigm ?

        Hardly new. The Left and the Green lot have been doing in since forever.

    2. PhilipN Silver badge

      Re: PC plugging shills

      I thought they were up voting the bleeding obvious (and simplistic).

  7. cirby

    Virtual Reality

    We're about a year away from the "business usefulness point" of virtual reality systems - the headsets will be crossing the resolution line, and enough good software will be available. Prices on systems are already starting to drop, and the showstopper bugs are all pretty much worked out.

    ...and yes, that will mean desktop-level systems, not tablets and phones. Yeah, you can shoehorn enough hardware into a laptop, but at twice the price of an equivalent desktop machine, and you still need at least a small stationary work area.

    1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

      Re: Virtual Reality

      Seriously? VR will be successful in the same way that 3D-TV is now.

      It's not that there's no possibility of success, just that there is no genuine need for something that doesn't really solve any problems that need solving nor solve them well. In other words, niche at best even if the technology is briefly entertaining.

      As for "showstopped bugs being worked out", do you mean the sync issues with direction getting out of sync with reality, the issues in manipulating 3D space or the objects in it (moving around or interacting with objects) or the issues of interacting in an unconstrained way with the environment (leaning or otherwise moving through a solid surface).

      1. cirby

        Re: Virtual Reality

        Data visualization alone is enough for a lot of users, and when you start looking at architectural design and other industries, VR kicks flatscreen straight to the curb.

        Training is already a major VR segment, you just haven't noticed it yet, for some reason.

      2. User McUser

        Re: Virtual Reality

        As for "showstopped bugs being worked out", do you mean the sync issues with direction getting out of sync with reality, the issues in manipulating 3D space or the objects in it (moving around or interacting with objects) or the issues of interacting in an unconstrained way with the environment (leaning or otherwise moving through a solid surface).

        You've clearly only used mobile VR - the ones that use your phone. Proper desktop VR has robust tracking and positioning and the controls are mapped 1:1 within the space around you. You can pick up virtual objects with ease - it's all very intuitive and natural feeling. Don't get me wrong, there are still a LOT of issues to work out, but it is merely a matter of time before they figure them out.

        Is VR "the future" of all computing? I have no idea, but I think that the technology is here to stay, even if it's just for video games and entertainment.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Virtual Reality

      We're about a year away from the "business usefulness point" of virtual reality systems

      Hasn't this been the case for the last few years?

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "even in a good quarter [India] only buys about 2.1 million machines" …

    …and they all go into call centres for "Microsoft support" operations.

  9. johnnyblaze

    Well, considering sales of Surface devices have already in freefall according to Microsoft's latest financial report, IDC are off to a great start. I wonder, how many years of PC sales decline have we got to go through before they actually hit zero. Based on these forcasts, it will happen!

  10. Nick Ryan Silver badge

    Market saturaton

    Unless you have more specialist requirements, for example gaming or high end video work, most PCs bought within the last 5 years are still good enough and do the job. There is just no need to replace a system if all it's doing is being used as a glorified typewriter and web browser and it still does the job fine. Swapping out a HDD for a SSD will usually give all the performance boosts most people need as long as the amount of RAM on the system isn't too low in which case just upgrade that as well.

    Which makes it even more annoying when Microsoft force churn through refusing to support older processors...

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Market saturaton

      More like mature market.

      What is interesting is the projected low rate of decline, just -1.7%

      This would seem to imply that many are probably still locked into the 3~5 year lease/replacement cycle.

      The only question is really at what point will the market stablise ie. when new user seats become totally insignificant and circa 99% of sales are replacements of a product with a longer service life.

    2. RareToy

      Re: Market saturaton

      >Unless you have more specialist requirements, for example gaming or high end video work, most PCs bought within the last 5 years are still good enough and do the job.

      Exactly. My mom still uses a 2011 i3 and outside of a slow boot up time, it does everything she needs. I just built a new system to replace my 2011 i7, and the configuration will last me another 8 years (although the M2 SSD will probably need a swap out at 3 or 4 years). People will always need a PC, but just not as many as before.

    3. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

      Re: Market saturaton

      Mature markets do not see much growth beyond population growth over time. Also, there is a robust used market. If I another box, I would buy a recent used, refurbished one as I already have plenty of gear that is more than adequate. There are plenty of reputable used computer dealers around.

    4. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

      Re: Market saturaton

      Looking around the house, not just at the baker's dozen living with me, I'd revise that to ten years. The lone, single-core, Windows XP machine (NOT internet connected) is the one that has MS Office doing documents, spreadsheets, and accounting. Go figure. Otherwise, they are all using phones and the occasional tablet which aren't suitable for those three applications.

  11. Ralph B

    Cause or Effect?

    Can't speak about Windows PCs, but let's talk about Apples. Are their Mac variants not being updated because their sales are falling? Or are their sales falling because they're not being updated*?

    * Or being updated badly: Unwanted touch bars, disappearing ports, etc.

    1. Rainer

      Re: Cause or Effect?

      They've recently updated everything bar the MacMini and the MacPro (and the MacBook Air) to Kaby Lake.

      They delays are mostly due to Intel no being able to deliver the CPUs they want/need for their products. They always have higher-end integrated graphics for example, and those only come later on the roadmap.

      The people that Apple is selling to aren't looking for 249 UKP bargains. Though, with the prices of the latest models, I see a certain threshold reached.

      (Even ignoring the FX effects specific to the UK).

      I think people will even pay the silly prices that are rumored for iPhone 8 - but as for the PCs and the laptops, there's a certain point where more people will have to say "No" than what you can make up with by the price increase. But Apple is clearly testing this limit.

  12. nickx89

    meh..

    PC gamers will buy the stuff regardless of downfall.

    1. emullinsabq

      Re: meh..

      prices continue to rise because it's one niche where the industry sees $$. and ofc, as the prices rise, the segment shrinks.

      Gamers begin to realize you can get a decent experience without 4K, without a $500 chair, without a top of the line system. There are articles about budget gaming everywhere gamers read.

      On the other hand, there are people like me who don't even like the new games very much. I'm sitting on a 9yo quad that plays everything I play. [to be fair, starcraft remastered isn't working on it because my bargain bin video card. i'll just replace it with a newer fanless one for $30 this year and be set]

  13. Stephen McLaughlin

    The article doesn't factor in VDI thin clients

    I see a lot of shops adopting VDI thin clients and dropping the need for workstations all together.

  14. Old_Polish_Proverb

    A lesson from Y2K?

    When the Y2K panic hit it was because many companies were still using old Cobal and Fortran programs from 20 years ago to run their businesses. Why go to the expense of upgrading something that was working? Change only came because economic panic forced them to review, repair and upgrade their infrastructure. I expect a steady transition away from old hardware onto the newest platform, only if the newest platform is not radically different from the old.

  15. MachDiamond Silver badge

    More consumers than creators

    Phones and tablets are consumption devices and more people consume media than create it. I find a tablet handy to have when I just need a limited device to check email, look up information on the web or do a very small amount of work online. I use a full notebook or desktop when I need to get real work done. Typing on a bespoke keyboard is so far superior to trying to hack out words on a membrane pad connected to a tablet that it can't even be adequately described. Processing photos photos on anything short of my full desktop is torture (real RAW images from a proper camera, not selfies from a phone). I doubt that CAD will ever be very pleasant or efficient to do on a fondleslab. It used to be that there wasn't a choice. An inexpensive laptop was the bottom of the line and a comparable desktop would have been half the price.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      An inexpensive laptop was the bottom of the line and a comparable desktop...

      Actually, it became very difficult to find bottom of the line desktops at half the price of a laptop. They are sold for more despite the lack of an LCD screen.

      My sister likes to work on a desktop PC, less space used on her real desktop, and she never need to carry a PC around. She's looking to replace her old one, but finding something acceptable below €450 without being a laptop is hard. All in one are too expensive, and she already spent for a good monitor.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: An inexpensive laptop was the bottom of the line and a comparable desktop...

        >She's looking to replace her old one, but finding something acceptable below €450 without being a laptop is hard.

        Does she actually need new?

        Just saying as good specification circa 3~5 year old business desktop system units can be had for under £100, in fact for €450 I suspect you could get a dual Xeon workstation in good condition (recommend Fujitsu)...

  16. DougS Silver badge

    Too optimistic

    They are lumping tablet sales in with "PC sales", and showing them with a big fall (which is probably correct) So in their mind PC sales (desktop, laptop, "detachable tablets" which are not tablets they're laptops) will go up. They won't. They'll fall, and fall more than 1.7% annually they show the entire desktop+laptop+detachable+tablet market falling.

    What's the incentive to replace a working desktop or laptop today? There is none, because the only major improvement made in that time is replacing hard drives with SSDs. The CPUs have hardly improved at all, so what was good enough in 2012 is still good enough in 2017 because Microsoft quit making Windows and Office demand more and more resources.

    But being wrong is nothing new to IDC and Gartner. They have to be, because it is the PC OEMs, peripheral OEMs, software OEMs, etc. who pay them for the details on this research. People don't like to pay to hear something they don't want to hear. So of course their predictions are always too rosy, and always show huge growth in the latest trend (i.e. their ridiculous predictions of tablet growth a few years ago, now replaced by ridiculous optimism for what they call 'detachables')

  17. Lucky2BHere

    Man... Just when I was about to build another desktop for myself.

    I also have a convertible/tablet, a notebook and a regular tablet. I use them when they make sense. And - wonder of all wonders - I do the same with the "legacy" form-factor desktop. There's no doubt sales will slow, but there are some very compelling reasons to keep the desktop form. Upgradeability and repairability are right there at the top, but power/dollar has always figured in.

    I've decided to go mini-ITX this time because of the obvious power density propositions. A typical setup will run anything I can throw at it, and if I had more professional needs (like heavy vid editing or graphics rendering), there're plenty of options. All while keeping the physical intrusion, power usage and noise to a minimum.

    I've been around this business for over 35 years and have seen the "inevitable demise" of the PC reported over and over. Until the overall value proposition tanks, it'll be around - albeit in "adjusted" forms - for a very long time.

  18. Kev99 Bronze badge

    Once people realize ipads, surfaces, etc are one trick ponies those sales will plummet. Where I once worked they had a surface pro. Until an external monitor and keyboard were hooked up, it was horrible for real world work.

  19. Mike Lewis

    The catch: new PCs come with Windows 10

    My desktop is six years old and I was thinking about getting more memory and an SSD. Then I thought I might as well buy a new one so I'd get a faster CPU as well. I was poring over the ads for new computers and found they all come with Windows 10. Oh dear. It looks like I'll be stuck with a slow CPU and Windows 7 for a while. Maybe Windows 11 will be better...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The catch: new PCs come with Windows 10

      they said that about Win 8.. "the next windows CANT be worse.., Win 8 is just a marketing trick to make their next release look good.. "

      Starting to think about getting a new home PC ( still majority of games not available under Linux ) , but not if its infected with anything later than win 7. As For my work machine, its underpowered, aging and decrepit but replacing it with something that my critical CAD type software may not work on (vendors website disclaimer) isnt a smart decision either.

  20. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

    Security

    If security is important to people then I see PC's holding their own in the marketplace. My reasoning is that a lot of security tools really benefit having a PC to act as a monitoring device.

    Plus if you are storing all your cat pix in the cloud then they are not as secure as having them on a NAS drive under your control. The best way to administer a NAS drive is arguably to use a PC.

    If a PC gets infected it isn't difficult to wipe it clean. Unfortunately however the advent of UEFI and the reduced demand for optical drives is muddying that certainty.

    Furthermore, if a company wishes to control who attaches what devices to the LAN will no doubt want to do that using the tools that a PC can use.

    The question then is what is the ratio of administration hardware to user hardware likely to be? I think this depends to what level such things as security breaches and shuttering of cloud services impinge on the general public over the coming months.

    1. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

      Re: Security

      I got timed out editing.

      Another question is how many of us have to dial-in remotely to administer remote pc's? Easy on a desktop, but it has to be a dire emergency for me to try the same thing from a smartphone or tablet. This need for employees and consultants to have this facility must also rate in the percentage of "essential usage of a desktop".

  21. Gustavo Fring
    Big Brother

    TAKE OUT THE MINERS

    anD BELEIEV ME i'vE TRIED .. and the sales figures will plummet even further. I think idc/gartner are spot on this .. A whole group of p[eople get all the computing they need from a tablet ..,.even those in the corp space. A tablet can do much that a desktop cannot do .. even be carried around...

    ANd even miners are moving over to ant-asics requiring just usb ports to be powered.

    Still I pay for my IDC reports in DASH and Monero ....lol

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