Tablets and Touch-based Devices Have Impacted PC Sales, But There’s an Upside: A Rapid, and Potentially Lucrative Renewal Cycle More Akin to That of a Smart Phone
Major North American computer products and consumer electronics distributor D&H Distributing is supporting its resellers in light of both the BYOD (“Bring Your Own Device”) trend, and an anticipated increase of touch-based computing in the SMB environment. Despite mobile computing’s role in a reported reduction of PC sales, D&H wants to remind its customers of a little-considered upside to the phenomenon: D&H Co-president Dan Schwab predicts that touch-based GUIs originally associated with mobile devices will spur an accelerated upgrade cycle. Owners of equipment from All-in-One PCs, to new touch-based notebooks and Ultrabooks, to tablets will look to obtain the latest features and apps, leading them to more frequently refresh their devices, incorporating more touchscreen interaction across-the-board.
Both consumers and mobile workers have sanctioned mobile, touch-based interfaces, as evidenced by the explosive growth of tablets over the past year, and by the similar watershed of smart phone products currently on the market. As touch becomes available in a greater range of computing formats, users will seek out the same look-and-feel they enjoy on their intuitive and easy-to-use tablets and phones. This increased turnover could lead to incremental profits for VARs.
The dynamic evolution of new apps, features and capabilities is another catalyst to a hastened upgrade cycle.For instance, a slew of mobile apps for both tablets and smartphones undergo updates on a regular schedule. These applications evolve so quickly that “aging” models can no longer accommodate updates after a certain amount of an app’s iterations. Operating systems also tend to sustain multiple updates per year, making it difficult for app developers to maintain versions for “older” systems. Therefore, individual units become obsolete astoundingly quickly, and sought-after capabilities are integrated into next-gen models.
Such a break-neck pace of market innovation will motivate consumers to turn in their current units for fresh models approximately every two to three years, similar to the typical renewal pattern of personal phones.
“The consumer is much more likely to purchase a new tablet in the $300 to $500 range in order to get the latest and greatest capability,” confirmed Schwab. “Plenty of consumers bought new iPhones just to get Siri when it was first introduced. Along the same lines, people will be looking to renew their desktops with touch features that are more reminiscent of how they are used to interfacing with their mobile devices. Touch-based GUIs, including tablet formats, are therefore creating an ecosystem of replenishable devices that can generate ongoing opportunities.”
A recent global study from SMB industry analyst firm Tech Aisle suggests that SMB customers with older PCs are spending the same amount or more in repair as it costs to purchase new PCs. Microsoft has also announced the end of support for Windows XP – a dominant OS for PCs four years or older.
“Intel’s innovative form factors powered by the 3rd Generation and 4th Generation Intel Core processor deliver amazing computing experience for SMB users, while allowing managed service providers and IT administrators to secure and manage them. This provides an amazing opportunity for our solution providers this year,” said Sharon Alt, director of North America Channels and Distribution, Intel. “We are working with our authorized distributors like D&H to equip our solution providers with the tools and resources they need to serve and support their SMB customers through the PC upgrade cycle.”
About D&H Distributing
As the nation’s leading technology distributor, D&H provides a wealth of resources to empower solution providers and consultants, delivering a broad selection of SMB categories, products and applications. The company’s offerings span server and infrastructure, SOHO and mobile applications, consumer electronics and gaming. D&H’s multi-market expertise, account-dedicated sales teams, sterling service and flexible financing options are unmatched in the industry.
With an impressive 95-year history serving as a trusted advisor to the reseller channel, D&H has been able to consistently reinvent itself based upon changing market conditions. The company prides itself on creating business partnerships with an astute focus on ease-of-doing-business, relationships, value, performance and service.
D&H has been named Cisco’s Worldwide Small Business Distributor of the Year, won the Microsoft Licensing Operational Excellence Award seven years running and has been named Microsoft’s OEM Distributor of the Year. The company ships out of five separate locations in North America, including its US headquarters in Harrisburg and its Canadian headquarters in Mississauga, Ontario. For more information, visit www.dandh.com.