Laptops under threat

Laptop PCs are becoming increasingly popular with computer users, especially because they offer the necessary mobility and a performance balance that can easily compete with desktop counterparts. Things, however, are poised to change in the next few years – and the bottom line is that laptops will become what the cassette walkman is now to the portable MP3.

This is according to Christopher Riley, MD of the notebook and accessories retailer, The Notebook Company (www.notebook.co.za).

“But,” he said, “this does not mean that laptops will become obsolete. They arguably won’t lose the edge that they have now over PCs  – but they will fade as the number one chosen mobile device as people opt for more sophisticated handheld devices. But as blackberries and mobile devices take over as the chosen form of mobile devices, laptops will usurp PCs in the desktop arena.  This might sound conflicting but I believe Laptop Sales will continue to grow as they replace Desktops and become the NEW Desktop.

“We are aware of trend and, consequently, we are already looking at providing the consumer more than just laptops,” said Riley.

According to Gartner market research analysts, the next five years will usher in significant changes in the mobile industry. The company is of the opinion that  half of the people who travel will simply leave their notebooks home and swap them with other handheld devices. This will have a noticeable impact on both the IT industry and the related fields – as well as the IT consumers.

Gartner says its research also points to the fact that executives and IT professionals need to take action as soon as this year and exploit the trends before competition becomes aware of them.

Commenting in the press lately,  Daryl C. Plummer, managing vice-president at Gartner, said” “As users begin to make their own decisions about what technologies to use, they shift industry dynamics. Apple has had a resurgence of its leadership in the innovative delivery of PC technologies. As users grow frustrated with PCs, the Apple model [if not its prices] begins to become extremely attractive again. And although this interest continues, users are now gaining enough functionality in mobile and wireless devices that it may be possible to leave the laptop at home in favour of the ubiquitous handheld device. Even in the home and business, individual technologies are growing in prominence.”

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Laptops under threat