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Analyst: "Glimmer" of Hope for PC Industry in 2013

By - Source: Forbes | B 37 comments

2012 may have been a memorable year for the PC industry, but certainly not in the way processor makers would have hoped.

Even if the traditional PC still controls the lion's share of processor revenues - and is likely to retain that control for some time - the smartphone and tablet have emerged as the far sexier topics that now lock up the enthusiasm the PC once had.

Yet not all hope is lost, at least not according to Evercore Partners analyst Rob Cihra, who informed his clients that "there are 'glimmers of hope' that PC demand will start stabilizing in the 2013 first half," according to an article published by Forbes.

Cihra believes that global PC shipments may come in flat in 2013 over 2012, following a 3 percent drop in 2012. The fourth quarter may be the deepest valley the industry has to cross with a 5 percent decline in shipments over Q4 2011. This is rather remarkable, given the launch of Windows 8 and ultrabooks, both of which carried the hope of reigniting PC sales.

Forbes quotes Cihra: "Much of the supply-chain looks to have needed to under-ship end PCs for a second consecutive quarter of inventory drawdown. Pressures continue to include weak macro and more so tablet cannibalization. Early ultrabooks have been stymied by high prices and Win8 so far looks like a remarkable non-factor."

According to the analyst, Windows 8 and ultrabooks may lift PC shipments in 2013. Sales potential in China also show reason for optimism.

 

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  • 16 Hide
    tomfreak , December 26, 2012 6:26 AM
    Sorry Intel/AMD/Nvidia/DRAM maker, I will continue to use my 4yrs old core 2 duo 3.2GHz/4GB + 9800GT PC for quite while. Please blame the software developer.
  • 12 Hide
    Soda-88 , December 26, 2012 7:30 AM
    apache_livesBecause there a premium product, you want better you pay for it.Another aspect why (sadly) Apple dominates -- do you see a cheap rubish "low end" Apple product? NOPE

    Yeah, those Mac Pros with first gen Core i based Xeons and 5000 series Radeons are top notch hardware and are priced competitively. Oh wait...
  • 11 Hide
    EzioAs , December 26, 2012 6:09 AM
    If only ultrabooks could be cheaper. I loved the concept and features that they bring but it's still a bit too expensive
Other Comments
  • 2 Hide
    abbadon_34 , December 26, 2012 6:07 AM
    Anyone who though Win8 and "Ultrabooks" (as if laptops needed net ANOTHER name to confuse people) were either sorely deluded or shamefully uninformed. The biggest factor in global PC shipments is still the corporate upgrade cycle.
  • 11 Hide
    EzioAs , December 26, 2012 6:09 AM
    If only ultrabooks could be cheaper. I loved the concept and features that they bring but it's still a bit too expensive
  • 16 Hide
    tomfreak , December 26, 2012 6:26 AM
    Sorry Intel/AMD/Nvidia/DRAM maker, I will continue to use my 4yrs old core 2 duo 3.2GHz/4GB + 9800GT PC for quite while. Please blame the software developer.
  • 11 Hide
    apache_lives , December 26, 2012 6:36 AM
    TomfreakSorry Intel/AMD/Nvidia/DRAM maker, I will continue to use my 4yrs old core 2 duo 3.2GHz/4GB + 9800GT PC for quite while. Please blame the software developer.


    +1 rubbish console ports and average crappy games that aren't demanding on cpu/video or any bleading edge latest hardware.

    Game makers blame piracy, thats just bs.
  • 10 Hide
    the magpie , December 26, 2012 6:51 AM
    The whole point is not that PCs are less sexy, it's that the PC, the desktop especially has matured as a platform. Like Tomfreak said, a 4+ year old PC can still perform marvelously almost everything you throw at it. The need to constantly upgrade has diminished significantly in the last 5 years or so. Therefore PC sales are starting to stabilize in accordance with the excellent capabilities of the platform. Read more on why the PC is here to stay at: http://saysthemagpie.com/the-desktop-pc-today-death-of-a-legend/
  • 5 Hide
    fuzzion , December 26, 2012 7:16 AM
    the magpieThe whole point is not that PCs are less sexy, it's that the PC, the desktop especially has matured as a platform. Like Tomfreak said, a 4+ year old PC can still perform marvelously almost everything you throw at it. The need to constantly upgrade has diminished significantly in the last 5 years or so. Therefore PC sales are starting to stabilize in accordance with the excellent capabilities of the platform. Read more on why the PC is here to stay at: http://saysthemagpie.com/the-deskt [...] -a-legend/



    You are actually right.

    I remember geforce 1 than 2 than skipped to 5 than 9 than 460gtxsli and skipping 5xx 6xx and waiting for 760ti. The need to upgrade now parallels with the renewel of consoles. Games(2013) are just beginning to use 11dx

  • -4 Hide
    virtualban , December 26, 2012 7:21 AM
    Virtual Reality can be used for production, not just for games. A JohnyMnemonic interface for example. Not even need for gloves. Cameras can find the position of fingers at fractions of millimeter accuracy.
    So, to use the talent of individuals, world, make this a current reality instead of future reality. New demand will come as a result.
  • 12 Hide
    Soda-88 , December 26, 2012 7:30 AM
    apache_livesBecause there a premium product, you want better you pay for it.Another aspect why (sadly) Apple dominates -- do you see a cheap rubish "low end" Apple product? NOPE

    Yeah, those Mac Pros with first gen Core i based Xeons and 5000 series Radeons are top notch hardware and are priced competitively. Oh wait...
  • 2 Hide
    memadmax , December 26, 2012 8:03 AM
    The desktop isn't going anywhere.
    Tablets/Smartphones/Small appliance type systems just don't do what desktops can in terms of use/raw power upgradeability etc etc.
  • 7 Hide
    memadmax , December 26, 2012 8:09 AM
    apache_livesBecause there a premium product, you want better you pay for it.Another aspect why (sadly) Apple dominates -- do you see a cheap rubish "low end" Apple product? NOPE


    You don't know anything about computers then.
    Apple makes low to mid grade desktops that are way to expensive for the hardware they pack and always have.
    Their phone *was* top of the line when it first came out, now it's the same as others.

    What, did you think that because it has a shiny case makes it a Ferrari in terms of speed?

    ha! hahahahahahahahahahaha!
  • 2 Hide
    DaRAGingLunatic , December 26, 2012 9:08 AM
    I'm sorry but instead of a 10% gain in PC processing power per year, Give 60% and it will be a hot topic again. You should see the performance gains per year of mobile devices like smart phones compared to the graph of performance gains in PC's. Mobile device performance gains are huge compared. This is how they are closing the gap. Check this Youtube clip at 4:45 showing a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 replacing a PC. watch?v=9nh2NSLgaII
  • -1 Hide
    killerclick , December 26, 2012 9:19 AM
    Lol, Win8 and Ultrabooks, the 2 major flops of 2012
  • 1 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , December 26, 2012 9:36 AM
    Quote:
    and Win8 so far looks like a remarkable non-factor.


    Who else laughed when they read this? lol
  • -3 Hide
    tomfreak , December 26, 2012 9:41 AM
    daraginglunaticI'm sorry but instead of a 10% gain in PC processing power per year, Give 60% and it will be a hot topic again. You should see the performance gains per year of mobile devices like smart phones compared to the graph of performance gains in PC's. Mobile device performance gains are huge compared. This is how they are closing the gap. Check this Youtube clip at 4:45 showing a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 replacing a PC. watch?v=9nh2NSLgaII
    hot topic yeah... may be.. but NOT hot sales, I pretty sure me & most others(casuals) will continue to stay with socket 775/socket AM2/3 because these platform are still going strong.
  • -1 Hide
    amk-aka-Phantom , December 26, 2012 9:42 AM
    Everybody who doesn't think ultrabooks are a major win is a fool. They will replace the normal "bulky" consumer laptops as soon as Asus and others get off their asses and convince the consumer that "Air" isn't the only thin laptop there is. Most of the people I see are not aware of existence of ultrabooks, gaming laptops and so on. So whenever they want mobility or powerful mobility, they go for a... Mac, right. And run Windows in it half the time. Because they don't need Mac OS, they just want something ultrathin OR mobile and powerful and are not aware that other vendors have something to offer too.

    As for Windows 8, yes, in this case a fool is whoever thought that it'd change something.

    Well, it did. Now MS can again be blamed for releasing a crappy OS, this time thanks to UI :D 
  • -3 Hide
    Duckhunt , December 26, 2012 9:44 AM
    You want to get the PC sales moving? First person shooters. We need a gun and not a joystick and 3 displays. We need eye infinity.

    Upgrade the FPS software and push 1440p and 1600p as the new standard at 120fps ( frames per sec) and the minimum. I swear folk will start upgrading. We need the gun to have recoil when it fires.
  • -2 Hide
    DaRAGingLunatic , December 26, 2012 9:55 AM
    Tomfreakhot topic yeah... may be.. but NOT hot sales, I pretty sure me & most others(casuals) will continue to stay with socket 775/socket AM2/3 because these platform are still going strong.


    Most casuals will get an upgrade when they're in the need of a new computer. Most casuals don't know much about computers. They never have. But computer manufacturers like to compete and will provide better, faster products to try get an edge over the competition; as long as those better faster products are available for them to use. In the old days of CPU design there used to be 50%+ performance gains per generation. Now days CPU design is catering to the Mobile space more than the desktop. So they're doing smaller performance gains, but increasing energy efficiency and decreasing thermals.

    In the old days the performance gains were used to run better, more resource intensive products that would use those performance gains. There were a lot of performance gains. Now it's less performance gains. Not as exciting. Not as much need to upgrade as time goes on as the next generation isn't that much better than the last.

    I want PC's that push boundaries and push hardware and can let software makers push those new performance gains to the limit.

    I don't want a damn laptop like every other man and dog. I don't want minimal gains. Performance gains make things more exciting.
  • -2 Hide
    DaRAGingLunatic , December 26, 2012 10:00 AM
    I mean... Where would we be if we had laptops when there were x386 CPU's and only had 10% performance gains per year... We certainly wouldn't be running anything as intense as windows XP... Or windows 7. Crysis would probably be a 1024 x 768 affair... looking like half life 1.
  • -3 Hide
    demonhorde665 , December 26, 2012 11:35 AM
    TomfreakSorry Intel/AMD/Nvidia/DRAM maker, I will continue to use my 4yrs old core 2 duo 3.2GHz/4GB + 9800GT PC for quite while. Please blame the software developer.


    you are obviously missing some games in yoru "playlist" if you are seriously getting by gaming on that set up ..

    skyrim , mech warrior online , Crysis 2 , battle field 3, are just a few of the titles that require way more hard ware than you are fronting.
    and don't tell me that is bullshit ... becasue untill sept temper i was gaming on a amd athy 64 x2 5000+ Oc'ed to 3 ghz with 6 gigs ram and a radeon 5770 (good step above your vid card about same cpu wise)
    and all those games saw drops down to 20 or lower frame rate , in sept temper i upgraded my cpu to a phenom 9650 quad core , and well now skyrim is playable with lows at 28 fps average at 50 fps but mwo and battlefield still see bad drops even on lowered settings

    i highly suggest you look at getting at least a i5 (intel) or Fx (AMD) 8 gigs of ram and radeon 6800 series or nivida gf 560 vid card if you want to call your system a serious modern gaming pc , in january i'll be looking to upgrade my whole pc myself because i'm not delusional in thinking my system passes the bar still

    apache_lives+1 rubbish console ports and average crappy games that aren't demanding on cpu/video or any bleading edge latest hardware.Game makers blame piracy, thats just bs.


    I just listed 3 major games that were not ports (skyrim and BF3 were multi system developed there is a difference ) and all above games pushhardware enough that you got to go 800+ bucks on a system to run them good they arnt budget ended games.

    daraginglunaticMost casuals will get an upgrade when they're in the need of a new computer. Most casuals don't know much about computers. They never have. But computer manufacturers like to compete and will provide better, faster products to try get an edge over the competition; as long as those better faster products are available for them to use. In the old days of CPU design there used to be 50%+ performance gains per generation. Now days CPU design is catering to the Mobile space more than the desktop. So they're doing smaller performance gains, but increasing energy efficiency and decreasing thermals.In the old days the performance gains were used to run better, more resource intensive products that would use those performance gains. There were a lot of performance gains. Now it's less performance gains. Not as exciting. Not as much need to upgrade as time goes on as the next generation isn't that much better than the last.I want PC's that push boundaries and push hardware and can let software makers push those new performance gains to the limit.I don't want a damn laptop like every other man and dog. I don't want minimal gains. Performance gains make things more exciting.


    daraginglunaticI mean... Where would we be if we had laptops when there were x386 CPU's and only had 10% performance gains per year... We certainly wouldn't be running anything as intense as windows XP... Or windows 7. Crysis would probably be a 1024 x 768 affair... looking like half life 1.



    you make it sound as easy as throwing money at ithe issue. the fact is PC performance gains have dropped off , because we are reaching the physical limit of small wires and transitors can go, we arnt quite to the theorectical limit yet but as we get closer and closer progress will slow drastically we are alread at 22 nm the smallest a wire or transistor can get before any ammount of heat running across it destroys it is like 8 or 7 nm sounds like we are a long ways away from that .. however , we are reaching the limit on ways to reduce said trasistors and wires in size. This problem we can throw money at, to find new ways to create circuts and chips but as the number of easy to think up techniques dry up , this gets more time consuming.

    but yeah throwing money at the laws of physics won't make them bend , you might as well stat throwing money at a way to fit a round peg into a square hole , because no ammount of money is going to make electron's smaller or make a electrical current not give off heat.

    the point i'm getting at is there never will be a return to they days of super performance gains between chip generations , and really think about this would you really want to return to those days , ??? only the super rich elite could afford to stay pc gamers if today's market was like this when top end video cards cost 300-600 dollars and top end cpu's cost 200-1000 dollars , most people just don't have 1000 bucks to spend non a new pc every year , hell i doubt you got that kind of money even, i sure as hell hope to sh-- that those day's don't return.

    as for mobile gains this is mostly due to the fact that mobile chip developers DON"T have to build around backward compatibility as much as a PC cpu does , note todays processors are still based off x86 , architecture. a quite outdated architecture . most the gains in mobile devices come from making better architctures that are more efficent at what they do , not die shrinks
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