The PC Is Very Much Alive
The world is clearly undergoing a “PC Plus evolution”, where the PC remains at the heart of an ecosystem of tablets, smartphones and smart TVs. In this PC Plus era, the PC remains central to the digital lives of millions of people and businesses.
PC in new form factors
According to a recent IDC survey conducted nine out of ten respondents do not consider tablets as replacements for PCs. The same survey also found that 58.5 percent of respondents bought a tablet to be used in addition to a laptop, and not as a replacement.
While some tablets may be closing the performance gap with PCs in terms of hardware, and office productivity software becomes available on mobile devices, the creation of content still demands a PC’s form factor for better input accuracy. The existence of a market for physical keyboards designed for tablets suggests that tablet users continue to face a compromised experience when entering text on their device’s touchscreen during content creation. The additional bulk of packing a keyboard also diminishes the space savings afforded by using a smaller device.
In absolute terms, the PC industry represents a $200 billion market and offers substantial opportunity for profitable growth. There continues to be room for innovation for the PC platform to make it even more relevant and desirable than before; convertible PCs, like table PCs, are an example of this continued innovation. We see a great potential to significantly grow the market for convertible PCs as we continue to lead and innovate in this category.
While the PC continues to be relevant in the technology industry, PC refresh cycles are expected to extend as people and businesses seek to balance budgets between the purchases of PCs and other mobile devices in the PC Plus space. As a result, there will be greater emphasis on product reliability, particularly for businesses, as their PCs need to be durable enough to meet the demands of longer operating lifespan.
All-day computing in the mobile era
As competition continues to stiffen in the industry for mobile devices, manufacturers regularly tout their products’ latest hardware and features, like QHD screen displays, high-megapixel cameras and multi-core processors. These product specifications are frequently highlighted as differentiating features, but they often come at the expense of battery life.
A device that is out of battery has zero features. With this unforgiving reality in mind, battery life should be one of the top considerations for end-users – and therefore manufacturers as well – as consumers become increasingly mobile. We believe products that enable all-day computing will be one of the focuses in the next one year, as users seek to rid themselves of the reliance on additional power sources while on the move and become truly mobile. The emphasis on battery life extends also to tablets.
Business verticals – the new tablet white space
The commercial segment is expected to expand to a fifth of the tablet market by 2017 as companies are increasingly picking up tablets for various use cases, such as equipping their mobile sales force, retail employees, field operations staff and basic productivity purposes for employees to stay connected and augment their productivity. In the second half of 2014, the overall tablet market is expected to grow as hybrid, detachable tablets and the next wave of tablet innovations fuel a new wave of growth for the category.
In line with businesses’ growing adoption of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), there is also an opportunity for consumer-oriented tablets like the Yoga Tablet to be used in the commercial space, as long as they meet the requirements of the business. For businesses with an existing cloud service, IT managers can ensure the tablets are secured via cloud-based software for these products.
CYOD - A new business mobility trend
As the adoption of BYOD continues in Asia Pacific, we expect a new trend to emerge in line with IDC’s predictions, whereby eligible employees are provided a choice of devices they can use for work. Termed “Choose Your Own Device” (CYOD), this model offers the benefits of management and security which can be standardized and guaranteed, and business processes can be mobilized.
While there will be obstacles to overcome in 2014, as with every year, Lenovo expects to tap on market opportunities for profitable growth as we continue to innovate in every product category in the PC Plus space, and maintain our strong execution of our successful “Protect and Attack” strategy in the new year.
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