Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Janet I. Tu.
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September 26, 2013 at 3:58 PM
Yes, PC sales are declining. And yes, PC sales in the back-to-school period went down this year compared with last year.
But, hey, the dip wasn’t as bad as expected.
And partly to thank for that? Touchscreen Windows notebooks.
July 10, 2013 at 2:26 PM
Worldwide PC shipments continued their decline, dropping about 11 percent in the second quarter of 2013, compared with this time a year ago, according to research firms Gartner and IDC.
May 28, 2013 at 10:28 AM
Research firm IDC has just released its forecast predicting that tablet shipments will beat those of notebooks this year and surpass total PC shipments (notebooks and desktops) by 2015.
It cites the growing popularity of tablets as well as the plunging PC market. IDC is forecasting negative growth for PC shipments for the second consecutive year, with a 7.8 percent decline.
“What started as a sign of tough economic times has quickly shifted to a change in the global computing paradigm with mobile being the primary benefactor,” said IDC analyst Ryan Reith said in a news release. “For many consumers, a tablet is a simple and elegant solution for core use cases that were previously addressed by the PC.”
Microsoft is scrambling to catch up in the tablet market, where it still has only a minuscule market share.
Another area where Microsoft is playing catch-up is in the smaller-sized tablets, which IDC says has already overtaken its larger-sized brethren. While Microsoft intended for Windows 8, launched last fall, to work on both tablets and notebook/desktop PCs, the company did not anticipate the surging popularity of sub-8-inch-screen tablets. Its flagship Surface tablet features a 10.6 inch screen. Microsoft has said it’s working with manufacturers to come out with smaller sized Windows tablets.
Here’s IDC’s chart:
February 20, 2013 at 4:46 PM
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has talked frequently about how the company is shifting from providing mainly software into a devices-and-services company. He expounds further on his vision for Microsoft’s future in a recent interview with MIT Technology Review.
When asked what Microsoft’s vision for the future of computing is, Ballmer said: “We’re about defining the future of productivity, entertainment and communication. In the new world, software is going to have to come in kind of an integrated form — or at least a well-designed form that includes cloud services and devices.”
Ballmer also offered some interesting breakdowns on what percentage of some of its most popular products go to consumers vs. businesses. “Sixty-five percent of all PCs go to the consumer, not to the enterprise,” he said. “Seventy percent of all Office suites go to the consumer, not the enterprise. One hundred percent of all Xboxes go to the consumers, not the enterprise. Now, we’ve monetized the enterprise better than the consumer, there’s no question about that.”
As far as the company’s track record with consumer products, he said: “Is there a lack of understanding, or in some cases do I wish our execution had been better? I would say the latter. In cases where we’ve embraced end-user needs and really sort of dived in, like the things that we’ve done with Kinect and the Xbox, I think we’ve done a heck of a job. Which is not to say that we cannot do this work with our OEMs.”
He also — kind of — addressed how sales of Surface were going (Microsoft has not released sales figures for the Surface, but analysts have estimated sales of the Surface RT tablet at below a million. The Surface Pro, which has been facing apparent supply problems, launched earlier this month). In response to a question about whether he was pleased with Surface sales and whether it’s a real business, Ballmer said: “Surface is a real business. In an environment in which there’s 350 million PCs sold, I don’t think Surface is going to dominate volume, but it’s a real business.”
You can read the full interview here.