“International Business Machines, whose first I.B.M. PC in 1981 moved personal computing out of the hobby shop and into the corporate and consumer mainstream, has put the business up for sale, people close to the negotiations said yesterday. While I.B.M. long ago ceded the lead in the personal computer market to Dell and Hewlett-Packard so it could focus instead on the more lucrative corporate server and computer services business, a sale would nonetheless bring the end of an era in an industry that it helped invent. The sale, likely to be in the $1 billion to $2 billion range, is expected to include the entire range of desktop, laptop and notebook computers made by I.B.M.,” Andrew Ross Sorkin and Steve Lohr report for The New York Times.
“The retreat from the business may be the ultimate acknowledgement that the personal computer has become a staple of everyday life, a commodity product, yielding very slim profits. The companies that make the most money from PC’s these days are Microsoft and Intel – whose software and chips are the standard for most of the personal computers sold, regardless of the maker,” Sorkin and Lohr report. “According to the people close to the negotiations, I.B.M. is in serious discussions with Lenovo, China’s largest maker of personal computers, and at least one other potential buyer for the unit. Lenovo was formerly known as Legend.”
Full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Imagine someone saying in 1984, “in two decades Apple will still be making Macs and IBM won’t even be in the PC business.” Who would have believed it?