I am thinking of upgrading my PC... But it seems a lot of online PC component vendors do not stock the regular items like cpu, mb, etc. Are people still building PC or the low inventory reflects the state of economy?
I don't know what low inventory you're talking about. Every site I go to for PC parts (Newegg, TigerDirect, Amazon, etc.) have whatever I'm looking for in stock. The only exception is when something brand new is released (like ATI's 5xxx series cards, nVidia's GTX 4xx cards, various new CPUs), and that goes away after the a few weeks.
Why do you think most online vendors arent stocking the regular items? Are you still looking for the older stuff? If so that might be why you cant find it. I havent seen any shortages from etailers. People are still building lots of PCs, you just need to look.
What online vendors were you looking at that didnt "stock the regular items"?
I used to buy things from www.zipzoomfly.com. When I look into mb and cpu, they have few in stock.
TigerDirect and Newegg are good, except the pricings are not in discount most of the time. Yes, you can say I am asking more than just putting a PC together.
The only reason I still want to build my own system is the choice of parts definitely make a difference in user experience. My current one was built in 2003, it is running fine if I use it for web surfing. However, I want to get into mobile device programming (android) and I find these old boxes kind of slow.
Get back to the original question, where will PC be in 3 years? I got a Droid a few months ago. I am amazed how much it can do. If the bandwidth is better, more cpu power, more PC like in short, I am afraid PC will lose its spot to "smart phone" in a few years. However, I do want to listen to your thoughts on this.
I just did a quick look at the motherboards at ZZF, ~20 LGA 1366 boards, ~50 LGA 1156 boards, ~50 AM3 boards, that seems like a decent selection to me, its not great but it certainly isnt sparse.
Personally, i dont see small mobile devices ever taking over the role of a PC, people tend to be more comfortable and efficient with a keyboard and a mouse and for higher level tasks like video editing/transcoding and image work, you need a larger screen and a more powerful CPU, so even if the mobile devices have the CPU power, once you have to hook it up to a monitor, keyboard, and CPU why not just have a full desktop?
I agree with most of the guys in here, there is a long way for smart phones to get to perform as any PC, its is true technology advance fast, but that goes for the pc world as well, for everything that advance in smart phone doubles in the pc world so i dont see any portable device ever replacing a desktop.
if we take a look at the most advance smart phone ( Iphone 4 ) its not yet close to a laptop and a laptop its not close to a desktop.