Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 23rd Jan 2013 22:09 UTC
Apple "Apple Inc reported quarterly revenue that slightly missed Wall Street expectations as sales of its flagship iPhone came in below target, sending its shares down more than 4 percent. The world's largest technology company shipped 47.8 million iPhones, lower than the roughly 50 million that Wall Street analysts had predicted. Sales of the iPad came in at 22.9 million in the fiscal first quarter, about in line with forecasts." I'll leave the financials to the experts, but one thing that stood out to me: Apple sold 4.2 million Macs, almost a million below expectations. How much of a future does desktop computing have at Apple? Update: The NYT/Reuters changed the title during the night. Fixed it.
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Comment by Valhalla
by Valhalla on Wed 23rd Jan 2013 23:12 UTC
Valhalla
Member since:
2006-01-24

How much of a future does desktop computing have at Apple?


Well the larger question is likely how much of a future the current way we think of 'desktop computing' has.

Back when Steve Jobs declared the 'post-pc era' is arriving I put little to no stock to it given that it was such a self-serving prophecy. Apple had realised that Microsoft's monopoly on the traditional pc desktop could not be budged and thus ushered in a new 'era' where the pc desktop as we think of it would be obsolete.

Like I said, I didn't buy into it, but now we're seeing how Microsoft is desperately scrambling to get any kind of foothold in these 'post-pc' era mobile devices, and in order to do so being fully prepared to sacrifice their relationships with OEM's, not to mention pissing off a large amount of users who see no need for a mobile touch focused UI on their desktop machines.

We are seeing the computing power in these mobile devices increase at a rather rapid pace, so is the 'future' of desktop computing a 'tablet' to which you connect a keyboard/mouse (and alternatively a larger screen) if/when you want to use it as a 'desktop pc'?

As such it would consolidate the traditional 'desktop pc' and the 'laptop pc', I suppose?

Anyway, interesting times ahead.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Comment by Valhalla
by No it isnt on Wed 23rd Jan 2013 23:41 in reply to "Comment by Valhalla"
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

Not this nonsense again. Desktop computing will be around for a long time, not least because tablets and phones are ergonomically poor for doing pretty much anything work-like, and not really all that good for anything else.

The "post-PC era" just means web sites need to be accessible to mobile interfaces. You can no longer expect the user to have a Windows PC with a mouse and Internet Explorer. PC sales are slowing down because your old PC is good enough. Even upgrading my old Radeon 5770 seems like it's not worth the money.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by Valhalla
by Macrat on Thu 24th Jan 2013 02:22 in reply to "RE: Comment by Valhalla"
Macrat Member since:
2006-03-27

Not this nonsense again. Desktop computing will be around for a long time, not least because tablets and phones are ergonomically poor for doing pretty much anything work-like, and not really all that good for anything else.


You really think a lot of "work" tasks won't be modified to work with a tablet and keyboard?

Desktop/laptop computing won't go away entirely, but it is declining fast.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by Valhalla
by Valhalla on Thu 24th Jan 2013 02:54 in reply to "RE: Comment by Valhalla"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

not least because tablets and phones are ergonomically poor for doing pretty much anything work-like, and not really all that good for anything else.

Well what I was describing was combining a 'tablet' with a mouse/keyboard for when using it for 'desktop pc' tasks and just as a 'tablet' when 'mobile'.

Mind you I'm not really arguing against you, I'm just trying to envision the future based upon the recent seemingly panicked actions from Microsoft.

Only way I can make sense of it is if they predict a strong consolidation between todays mobile 'devices' and the traditional home pc desktop.

Like you said, people will still need to do 'work' which is often not suitable with a touch interface, but why do they need to be separate devices when all that really differs (assuming the mobile hardware specs keep improving at a rapid rate) is that of a keyboard/mouse and possibly a larger screen estate?

So basically you have a 'tablet' style computer which you can bring with you anywhere and which works just fine using 'touch' for consuming information while on the move. Then when you want to 'work' you place it in some holder to be viewed as a typical desktop screen (or use it with an external screen) and connect it to your wireless keyboard/mouse and get to work, desktop-style.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by Valhalla
by Soulbender on Thu 24th Jan 2013 06:23 in reply to "RE: Comment by Valhalla"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Desktop computing will be around for a long time


Sure, but the use of large, bulky and immobile desktop computers will decline and it will probably happen with some haste.

not least because tablets and phones are ergonomically poor for doing pretty much anything work-like, and not really all that good for anything else.


Attach a proper keyboard, mouse and a USB drive and you can do most desktop tasks on a tablet with ease. Desktops will still be around for demanding tasks but most user's will be fine with a flexible tablet.

The "post-PC era" just means web sites need to be accessible to mobile interfaces


What the rather stupid term Post-PC mean is the decline of desktop computing.

PC sales are slowing down because your old PC is good enough.


Right and with more and more powerful and flexible mobile systems why would you buy a desktop once your old desktop no longer is good enough?

Edited 2013-01-24 06:24 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE: Comment by Valhalla
by unclefester on Thu 24th Jan 2013 07:48 in reply to "Comment by Valhalla"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13


We are seeing the computing power in these mobile devices increase at a rather rapid pace, so is the 'future' of desktop computing a 'tablet' to which you connect a keyboard/mouse (and alternatively a larger screen) if/when you want to use it as a 'desktop pc'?


Current ARM SOCs are no faster than x86 cpus from the early 2000s. It will take many years before tablets and phones are powerful enough to replace desktops.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instructions_per_second

Edited 2013-01-24 08:00 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by Valhalla
by chiwaw on Thu 24th Jan 2013 08:38 in reply to "RE: Comment by Valhalla"
chiwaw Member since:
2006-02-05

Current ARM SOCs are no faster than x86 cpus from the early 2000s. It will take many years before tablets and phones are powerful enough to replace desktops.


I understand what you mean but it's actually not quite true. Desktop have become WAY more powerful than needed by most people. If say 95% of the people only uses 20% of their desktop processing power at all time (which is just a wild guess but I bet is probably not far from reality), then it means that for 95% of people they can replace what they have with a computer only 20% as powerful. Especially that tablets and the likes have OSes that are specifically optimized for weaker CPUs, so they don't waste as much as heavier OSes.

Sure there's always going to be the exceptions, the people who needs every single MIPS they can get from their desktop, but these people are the exception.

Edited 2013-01-24 08:39 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1