Do you use Windows 8? It’s just as controversial as any release from Microsoft, and it’s also very different. It’s the first edition of the world’s dominant operating system designed with tablets in mind. The recent news that Google has become a ‘mobile first’ company further confirms that there is a big swing away from the traditional desktop PC.
Research from the NPD Group suggests the days when PCs walked the earth will, inevitably, come to an end. Windows 8 is a key signifier of this shift, but the author’s report, John Buffone says the big machines have a while to go yet.
Buffone said, “There is a significant amount of functionality that is best conducted on computers.”
This functionality is ‘content creation’ – writing, designing, photoshopping and so on – but a lot of content consumption is shifting to tablets and phones. Entertainment doesn’t need a keyboard and a mouse, making entertainment does.
The report found that the average online household (in the States) has 2.4 pcs and only 1.4 tablets.
NPD found that simple browsing, including Facebook use, is shifting to mobile. Twenty-seven per cent of tablet owners say they now use their PCs less for going online.
This change – like most change in the online world – is happening at a frightening pace. That Microsoft has seen the future and decided that it will be mobile, can be seen not only in the Windows 8 set up, but in the near-simultaneous launch of its own tablet, Surface Pro.
The silver bullet that will finally kill off the PC is a laptop or tablet that can handle both content consumption and creation.
Industry expert Patrick Moorhead reckons that will happen next year. He bases this on the plans of the people who make the bits and pieces that power our computers. Chip and processor makers are already producing the gizmos that match the low power consumption and high performance that tablets will need to work at both ends of the market.
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