8 Reasons The PC Is Not Dead - InformationWeek
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8 Reasons The PC Is Not Dead

Now that phablets have essentially cannibalized the tablet market, the personal computer has a chance to make a dramatic comeback. Here's why.
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(Image: Geralt via Pixabay)

(Image: Geralt via Pixabay)

The debate about the death of the PC rages on. On one side, you have those who point to dramatic declines of PC and laptop sales over the past few years as proof that the personal computer is on its last legs. On the other side are those who happily list the reasons why PCs -- especially in the enterprise -- are far from extinct.

I happen to believe that the PC is far from dead. In fact, I suspect overall PC and laptop sales to experience a resurgence in the next few years. There are a number of reasons why the PC retains an advantage over alternative devices such as smartphones, tablets, and phablets. While some of these reasons may not be relevant in a consumer world, they are critical for users performing tasks in an enterprise.

Additionally, the personal computer's biggest threat -- the tablet -- is going through a sluggish sales period at the moment. A once-hot tablet market has cooled as users gravitate toward smartphones with large screens that serve a dual purpose. It seems that for many mobile users, a five- or six-inch smartphone screen isn't that much different from an eight- to 10-inch tablet screen when it comes to performing most mobile tasks. That is, unless you're trying to do real work. You know, the kind of work that involves writing for long periods of time or manipulating numbers in spreadsheets and databases.

A vacuum has been created in the world of enterprise productivity devices. A year or two ago, it indeed looked as if the PC would be replaced by the tablet. But now that phablets have essentially cannibalized the tablet market, the personal computer has a chance to make a dramatic comeback.

Here are eight reasons why rumors of the PC's death have been greatly exaggerated. Once you've reviewed them all, let us know what you think. Will the PC live on, or are we flat-out wrong in our predictions? Tell us all about it in the comments section below.

Andrew has well over a decade of enterprise networking under his belt through his consulting practice, which specializes in enterprise network architectures and datacenter build-outs and prior experience at organizations such as State Farm Insurance, United Airlines and the ... View Full Bio

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stevew928
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stevew928,
User Rank: Ninja
5/12/2015 | 8:12:04 PM
Re: The PC was never even sick let alone dead.
The whole 'consumption device' thing is a bit of a vast oversimplification. Sure, there are the clear cases, like watching a movie or reading a book in bed is way better on a tablet... setting up a 3D animation scene is way better on a desktop.

But, the inbetween can be quite gray. If a doctor is using a tablet to input information during a patient visit, that might actually be far easier than having to roll over to, or sit at a desktop/laptop to do the same thing. And, that's not a clear-cut case of 'consumption' either.

And, as I said in one of my other posts, it's often more a matter of context that determins which is better suited, or even possible, for the same type of task.

Microsoft didn't fail at tablets for many years for lack of trying. The problem was that they were approaching the tablet like a more mobile laptop (and arguably still are). That simply isn't the case... and that's why they aren't going away (nor are desktops). It has little to do with computing power into a particular package size, though that certainly influences the possibilities.
Broadway0474
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Broadway0474,
User Rank: Ninja
5/12/2015 | 9:46:28 PM
Re: Desktop isn't dead, but...
Nothing makes me smirk more than when people pull out those rubbery, uncomfortable looking keyboards to use with their iPads. I feel for those people. In most cases, they must have been assigned a desktop at work and have no choice but to bring their tablets into meetings to take notes. If they have a laptop and have a choice, though, I scratch my head in disbelief. What are they thinking?
Jamescon
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Jamescon,
User Rank: Author
5/13/2015 | 3:53:40 PM
Re: A couple more reasons
@Keith. Interesting point about content creation vs content consumption. If you are primarily a content creator then a PC/notebook may be right for you because you can still consume content just fine on that rig. The funny thing about the content consumer as a primary role is that they also tend to be content creators, even if they don't realize it. Typing "LOL" may not be creation, but editing a photo or video prior to posting on social media certainly is, and long comments, on blogs certainly is creation. Will those content consumers eventually want a hybrid device that is at least a little more friendly when it comes to typing and working with multiple data types? Does the phablet fill the role? Does something along the lines of a Chromebook? Or, will those users just trade off some functionality for portability and accessibility?
Technocrati
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Technocrati,
User Rank: Ninja
5/15/2015 | 10:12:20 PM
Performance, Performance, Performance !

I certainly don't think the PC is dead by any means - laptops are nice and usually meet most basic needs but there are times as noted in the article that performance is needed and when that times comes - individuals will be extremely happy to have a PC.

kstaron
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kstaron,
User Rank: Ninja
5/26/2015 | 5:28:34 PM
performance and upgradability
Both performance and upgradability are the ones that do it for me. (Not to mention trying to squint at the little screen while tying as my phones auto correct feature starts mucking with my sentences.) My tablet is fine for browsing the web or playing clash of clans or check my email. It is not fine for composing a post over a sentence long, playing anything remotely graphics heavy, or doing things I might actually get paid for. I have more devices in my house than I can shake a stick at and I can count four of them as PC's/laptops. Two are waiting for upgrades, but once my tablet gets slow it's a goner.
anibande76
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anibande76,
User Rank: Apprentice
12/18/2015 | 12:48:44 AM
PC is dead
What if you have an option to connect your mobile device to a larger screen as and when required, somtthing like a Windows 10 OS.
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