First iPad, now iCloud: PC industry faces a world of hurt

“This has not been a great year for the PC industry, and it’s about to get even worse,” Bill Synder reports for InfoWorld. “With sales of mobile devices exploding, Gartner yesterday downgraded its forecast for PC sales this year to 9.3 percent or 385 million units from 10.5 percent.”

“Tablets, smartphones, and the cloud have it. PCs and PC-centric companies like Dell and Microsoft don’t,” Synder writes. “What we’re looking at is a perfect storm: The mobile revolution, the desire of consumers to accumulate digital content at home, and the consumerization of IT are together swamping the PC.”

“The failure is all the more striking when you look at what Apple was doing at the same time. At the height of the miniboom in netbook sales, Steve Jobs was catching flack from pundits who thought he should produce a mini MacBook. He refused, instead focusing the company’s energy on the iPad,” Synder writes. “We know how that worked out. As of the last quarter, the biggest drag on sales of iPad 2 was lack of capacity to meet demand. Simply put, Apple is selling every single one it can produce.”

Synder writes, “Apple’s forthcoming iCloud sync-and-storage service… which allows users to sync content transparently across multiple devices, is right, well, in sync with how people now view computing.”

Much more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dow C.” for the heads up.]

27 Comments

  1. Dropped in at the local Apple Store Tuesday about noon and the place was covered over with customers like the back to school season of Christmas season. IPads,iPads everywhere.
    Dropped by after a scheduled service (90 day follow up at VW) and the waiting area was populated with customers packing iPhones, iPads and MacBook Pros. Seriously. Not a Dell or Droid in sight.

    1. Perhaps the Droids & Dells were sitting forlornly inside their unopened boxes in the back office waiting for a kindly soul to buy them on BOGFF (buy one get five free).

      1. Droids and Dells, populating The Island of Misfit Toys?

        Only this time, Santa won’t foist these ne’er-do-wells upon any children at Christmas.
        Santa cannot bring himself to that level of cruelty.

  2. Someone gets it. Someone understands. Now wait for the rest of the world take the next 2 years to fully grasp what Apple has just done. Game over, man, game over!!

  3. Apple did make a “mini MacBook” – it is called the Air. The difference is that it was a highly functional Mac OS X device with fewer compromises.

    The estimate downgrade from 10.5% to 9.3% growth is huge – the 1.2% delta probably represents around 4.5M units. It is even more damaging to the Windows PC industry if Apple continues growing substantially faster than the rest of the industry.

    It doesn’t even matter to me if they count the iPad as a computer or not when calculating unit sales and market share. The fact is that it brings in more revenue and profits to Apple than the average PC does to Dell or HP. The PC makers can have all of the unprofitable market share that they want.

    1. I hadn’t realised Dell actually made PCs. I thought it was some random monkey standing in a production line gluing random parts together, parts that will fall apart the moment you extracted the Dell PC from its box.

  4. I took the time to watch the whole keynote address and I was fairly impressed with all three new offerings of Lion, iOS and iCloud. I truly believe Apple is going to make things so much easier for users of multiple devices that they will definitely go running to Apple from the Windows platform. I usually take pains to keep all my computers synced to some degree but I actively have to do it. It’ll be nice to have it done without working at it.

    It was great to hear that consumers won’t need a computer to activate their iPads and iPhones and everything can be done wirelessly. The iHaters and their need for all sorts of transfer ports seems rather redundant if you’ve got Airdrop. This sort of approach really does tie you to Apple though. I don’t care since I’m a dedicated Apple user and I think that a unified ecosystem makes it simple for everyone on that particular platform. Some prefer a cross-platform approach, but that’s not Apple’s way.

    I wonder how businesses will take to Apple now. SMB’s should adapt Apple devices in droves due to making everything stay in sync without any effort. I sure hope newer Time Capsules can provide mirroring of cloud services so users have some reliance on their own hardware. The more devices you have, with automatic syncing, the more backups you’ll have which is great.

    Apple is making computing so much easier for non-tech users and as long as Apple’s cloud services are robust there’ll be no looking back on the older methods. Hopefully it will “just work”. I’m not making any predictions since demos are just that. I’ll wait until these services are in the hands of consumers and see what they think of it. Apple’s got three iOS devices to create a darn large user base to benefit from Apple’s ecosystem. They need to get AppleTV running iOS to complete the package.

    1. I think as far as business adoption it will really depend on the business itself and what kind of data they utilize for business.

      We have not looked into how we are going to handle iCloud access going forward at my work, meaning the specifics of dealing with it technically speaking, its going to be BLOCKED or if that is not feasible then worst case is it will change the course of us actually being able to use iPads and iPhones in our business *(which would suck, we are piloting it now and the interest is high)*

      1. While you can block it at work, it will be difficult to block it at home.
        That said, there should really be an option to have “iCloud on your premises” with OS X Server – but they are probably leaving that for the post-Lion release.
        I would also assume you need quite a bit of infrastructure to make all this work together seamlessly.

      2. Isn’t that the automatic knee jerk reaction of a corporate IT guy? Block, deflect or ban that which you cannot control no matter how useful it might be to the end user? I hadn’t realised we still live in Stalinist times. Does Uncle Joe sleep in the same bed with you?

        1. Not at all. There is a reason most IT departments are conservative towards this kind of thing, or do not want it period.

          To the user its just ‘their work’ , but to IT and the company, it is proprietary business data, IP, customer records and contracts in most cases.

          I can 100% promise you I will not be the guy sitting in a room getting grilled by the CEO when some dumb@ss inadvertently sends sensitive company information or government restricted data to ‘the cloud’ and exposes the organization to losses or huge fines.

          I got this job because the last guy was a bit too ‘carefree’ when it came to information security.

          1. Dude: Excellent attitude and response. You as IT manager must have ironclad guarantees from whatever cloud services provider you consider that your company’s data are secure, and that the cloud provider assumes liability in case of theft or loss.

            Indeed, the term “information security” is the operative here. Good luck with your job of keeping it secure.

            1. Dude: exactly. Nut guy has never heard of Co-tennancy or hyperjacking. Big difference between joe sixpack hacker and state/corporate sponsored attacks.

      3. I wonder if those 1500 new APIs will include some for IT depts to utilize iCloud autosave and cloud storage features locally — that is, blocked from AAPL’s cloud farm and redirected to the company’s servers, preserving all other functionality.

        I think healthcare, defence and companies that have to address European privacy regulations will use those.

        1. That would absolutely rock and I hope so.

          Seriously I’m not expecting this because traditionally Apple has not shown any interest in ‘listening’ to the needs of corporate IT but if they did do this it would go a long way in repairing the bad attitudes in some IT groups towards Apple and could really help with enterprise adoption of Apple hardware and software.

          I’d be like as giddy as a kid on xmas morning myself 🙂

        2. API’s aren’t the issue. Health, finance, DoD, won’t go near it until you can guarantee trust down to the silicone and include some form of geo-tagging.

  5. Synder writes, “Apple’s forthcoming iCloud sync-and-storage service… which allows users to sync content transparently across multiple devices, is right, well, in sync with how people now view computing.”

    That’s plain silly. It should be the other way around. Something like, “Users are realizing, as with the iPod, iPhone and iPad, that Apple’s forthcoming …etc. ….is what they’ve wanted all along without knowing it and is how they now view computing.”

  6. “Tablets, smartphones, and the cloud have it.”
    _____________________________________________

    Nope.

    iPads, iPhones, iPod Touches, and iCloud have it.

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