Smaller PCs Cause Worry for Industry - NY Times

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Consumers speak, Manufacturers quake.

SUMMARY: Consumers speak, manufacturers quake.

This article in the New York Times caught my eye yesterday – in summary it says that computer manufacturers are concerned about the emerging small PC market pioneered by ASUS – it’s not to their liking because there is not enough margin in $300 notebooks compared to the usual $1,000 – $2,000+ fully featured laptop. Microsoft is grudgingly keeping XP alive for this segment, more to stave off Linux as the preferred OS than anything else.

Is it me, or do you get the feeling the “big boys” such as HP, Dell and Microsoft are upset that consumers have the gall to reject the “more-more-more” marketing program?

Seems to me the PC industry has its “hit the wall” products which are indicative – the “Presshot” and Vista are two examples that come quickly to mind. We have done surveys which clearly indicated that many in our audience are quite content with the PCs they have and don’t see the “killer apps” to justify junking a perfectly good single core 2-3 year old PC for the latest multi-core PC of the month.

Couple this with “cloud computing” and the “less-is-more PC” becomes not only viable but for a significant market segment, the preferred choice.

What heresy is this?!!

Back in my university days it used to be called the tyranny of the free market – consumers do vote with their wallets/pocketbooks after all. Even those that have overwhelming market share are susceptible to the free market, thank goodness!

I have nothing profound to say here, just that I find it interesting to see how the free market still works – warms my old economist veins to see it in action.

Email Joe


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