The Tablet Takeover Is Here — Let’s Take a Look

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The computer world is experiencing a tablet takeover – and the PC world as we know it may be fading away. At least, that’s what the latest numbers show after the first quarter this year.

The latest IDC report shows a significant surge of 142.4 percent in global sales since this time last year with 49.2 million shipments the opening months of 2013, according to the latest IDC report. These numbers already surpass the total shipments for the entire first half of 2012.

Design & Trend says such massive growth is due to the consumers’ preferences for small-screen devices over PCs.

But the issue may not be about the rise of tablet popularity, but about the decline of PCs. Yahoo News breaks down the latest numbers from IDC’s first quarter report, “PC shipments posted their “steepest decline ever in a single quarter” in Q1 2013, as the 76.3 million PCs shipped represented a 13.9% decline from Q1 2012.”

Financial Times says Windows 8 has actually hurt the PC market as its introduction contributed to “the worst quarter since IDC’s records began in 1994.”

For many reasons, PC makers have failed in providing any competitive advantages to the rise of tablets and TIME Tech notes, “the overriding reason is that selling a tablet is not at all the same as selling a laptop. Being successful doesn’t just require good hardware, it also requires differentiated software (not to be confused with bloatware), ultra-competitive prices and tons of advertising. PC makers aren’t known for any of those things, and it’s hard to see how that’ll change.”

Sure, the portability and convenience of tablets and other mobile devices carry much of the advantage, but Forbes explains there are some qualities of PCs that just cannot be replaced… yet.

“It’s not just my main programs like Microsoft Office that I like, but also lots of little utilities, such as the ones that let me redefine certain keys, or allow me to capture and easily edit portions of the screen. I know there are tablet apps that do some of these same things, and eventually I may shift more of my work to tablets, but I find these apps convenient and even comforting.”

All this chatter got Reuters thinking – maybe the tablet versus PC war doesn’t need to have any casualties. The intense popularity of tablets may ultimately help – not detriment – the future of PCs.

“New things don’t necessarily kill old things. Television was an enormous disrupter of the movie industry, but Hollywood adapted with improvements in audio and video that could not be matched on the home screen. In the TV era, movies and theaters didn’t wither and die. TV improved the movies.

Tablets can do the same for PCs.”

Reuters goes on to stress that PC makers must not dwell on their inconveniences compared to tablets, but find compelling reasons to declare why traditional computers are still relevant.

Still refuse to pick a side? Reuters may have the answer – hybrid devices.

“[W]e’ve only begun to see the possibilities of hybrid devices — offering the promise of the best of both the tablet and laptop world.”
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