App-enabled devices will outship the traditional PC within 18 months, according to a report published by IDC. According to the market research firm, tablets and smartphones will hit 284 million annual units this year, 377 million next year and 462 million in 2012.
At the same time, PC units are growing as well, albeit at a much slower pace. 356 million PCs this year, 377 million next year and 448 million in 2012. IDC said that this trend does not mean that the PC is dying. It is a scenario in which the PC market is expanding. Of course, that is a matter of subtle market developments that are difficult to forecast at this point (probably as difficult as predicting PC sales in 2012), but if IDC is right and we are not surprised by another economic slowdown, then it would be time to talk about the future of software.
If we are heading toward app-enabled devices, it is a shift from the traditional software model that limits us to traditionally one installation one just one device. Apps have the potential to drive a software (or services) model that makes software available on all of your devices through a platform in Apple's case or a browser in Google's (and potentially Mozilla's) model. Microsoft is, by the way, also playing a role and has just launched a new TV campaign (opens in new tab) to remind us that there are Microsoft cloud applications.
Source: Computer World