Upcoming Windows PCs Pose a Threat to Apple

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News Posted: Sun, Feb 17 2013 11:23 AM
It's fair to say that Windows 8 has gotten off to a rocky, if not misunderstood start. At a glance, the timing couldn't be worse, with Apple's iPad cannibalizing PC sales among folks who just want to surf the Internet and check their Facebook feeds. In fact, if you count tablets, Apple is the world's top PC supplier, according to data that was recently released by Canalys. This is part of what started all that so-called "post-PC era" chatter, but don't you go believing that nonsense.

PCs are far from dead, and according to a Citibank analyst, Windows 8 will spur innovation in the PC industry that will ultimately pose a real threat to Apple, CNet reports.

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"Whereas we see limited innovation in tablets in 2H13, we see growing innovation in PCs. The growing presence of touch-based, ultrathin, all-day notebooks at improving price points (e.g., Intel requires all Haswell-based Ultrabooks to have touch and envisions price-points as low as $599) could create competition for 10-inch tablets not fully anticipated by the market," Citibank analyst Glen Yeung stated in a research note.

In other words, hybrid devices are key to wrestling market share away from the iPad, and when Haswell comes out, you're going to see some compelling PC designs that are thinner, lighter, and boast better battery life than what's on the market today.
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3vi1 replied on Sun, Feb 17 2013 4:12 PM

What do they smoke over at Citibank? Windows 8 PC's are no threat to Apple. In fact, Windows 8 is losing ground to multiple competitors fast, whereas Apple just had a record breaking number of sales in Q1.

It's much more likely that the hybrid devices to wrestle market share from the iPad will be ARM-based systems (with good battery life) running Android or some other Linux-based OS; People just aren't buying Windows ReallyTerrible. Reports have it that MS only sold /maybe/ 400,000 units out of the 4 million WinRT units they were predicting... and that those have extremely high return rates.

Meanwhile, only a couple of weeks back, Acer's CEO stated that (since November) somewhere up to as much as 10% of their PC shipments in the US were Chromebooks (running ChromeOS/Linux). If I still had any MS stock, now would be the time to sell.

MS needs to get Win9 out the door quick. To appease most people, it just needs to be Windows 8 with an option at install time that lets you pick a default of 'Classic desktop' or 'Modern UI'. If Linux devs can support 16 different desktops, MS should be able to support two.  Or, at least come in cool ranch flavor.


What part of "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn" don't you understand?


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JDiaz replied on Mon, Feb 18 2013 5:45 PM

Problem with Apple is they're not really innovating anymore, so in the long term the changing PC market does pose a threat because it's evolving!

Just because Apple is still on top now means nothing as to whether they'll stay that way or not. Plenty of companies have tried to rely on what gave them success but without change those strengths eventually become their weaknesses!

So don't confuse your dislike and underestimation of Windows 8 with whether the PC market poses a threat to Apple or not.

Windows 8 isn't doing quite as badly as you're thinking anyway. Market share is still slowly digging away at Windows 7 user base and it's nothing new for Windows to have slow starts.... It actually took XP nearly 3 years, and two SP updates, from time of release to be considered a good upgrade from the buggy ME/95 releases. While Windows 7 is actually a fixed version of Vista, which they basically just tweaked and renamed, and it still took about 3 years before it finally started to take over from XP. So having a slow start means nothing in the long term for Windows!

The actual pattern is they release a new OS, with or without major changes, and still buggy and not really finished. Then over the course of the next few years they fix it until people finally accept it...

Besides, what matters is that things are changing and the potential for those changes to be benefited from in the long term matter more than any short term failures. Even if Windows 8 does ultimately fail, it's setting the ground work and catalyst for long term changes that will make the PC market very different in just a few years.

Already, we're going to be seeing far more proliferation of features previously only seen in mobile devices being spread to virtually all PC's.

So, even if we all switch to some form of Linux in a couple of years this'll remain true. Really, it's hardly like Ubuntu and other Linux distros aren't making the move towards mobile, touch screens, etc. with both Phone and Tablet optimized versions.

Meanwhile, Apple is still only upping specs and doing more of the same... So is there any real wonder that analyst are starting to see that there might be some long term trouble in store for Apple? It's not like we haven't seen this pattern repeated time and again by other companies!

And no, the products we like don't always succeed either... nor the products we dislike always fail!

That said, I have no problems supporting multiple solutions... The more choices for the consumers the better!

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