It shouldn’t come to any surprise that the desktop computer is dead. We’ll take a pause and bow our heads in prayer, because it’s true. The hulking machines with the glowing LEDs and whirling fans will soon cease to exist outside of the workplace. It’s sad, really. There are several reasons for this and there’s not much that can be done to prevent the inevitable. I base this primarily on my recent excursion to our local electronics shop, a place I once loved, but no longer recognize. What I saw in the vast open spaces of that store was depressing. Large shelves stocked with computers, printers and monitors were gone, the shelves in a landfill somewhere and the few remaining PCs crammed in a corner under a sign reading “Discounted.”
Top Five Reasons The Desktop Computer Is Dead
In my opinion, these are the top five reasons for the decline in computer sales and production:
1. Smartphones. We saw the same thing happen with CDs following the emergence of MP3 players. The smartphone can access the Internet, can do email, run apps, take pictures, play music, order pizza and find itself if you misplace it. The smartphone and its trollish brother the iPads and tablets of the world, make computing ultra-portable and convenient. No longer does one need to leave the room to check email or browse the web. Despite the fact people are getting a diminished experience using smartphones, they still use them more than PCs because they are convenient and always readily available.
2. Low Profit Margins. HP recently announced they were getting out of the computer business. With demand being so low and competition for a shrinking market so high, producing desktop computers makes it too difficult for these major brand names to turn a profit. They first tried to stay afloat by outsourcing tech support. Now their final recourse is to stop making computers that people no longer have a need for.
3. No Innovation. The only innovative piece of desktop computing hardware I saw was an HP TouchSmart 600-1390 All-in-One Desktop PC. But if you look closely, the darn thing resembles a giant tablet computer with a keyboard. If anything proves that the desktop computer is (evolving, devolving) it’s that computer. As beautiful as it is, the Touchsmart computer and others of its kind are the last dying gasp for personal computing as we once knew it.
4. PC gaming is on the decline. Again, thanks to smartphones and game consoles, PC gaming is on the decline. While there will always be those that play computer games (myself included) the majority of average computer users playing games on a desktop computer is declining.
5. The Internet. What? How can the Internet kill desktop computers? Well, mega-sites like Amazon and NewEgg have killed off popular walk-in stores like Circuit City. Gone is the impulse buy. Gone is being able to walk into a store and stroke the sleek curves of a tower, or gently cup the round mouse that fit so perfectly in your hand–okay wait, that sounds bad. But it’s true. I was more likely to buy a computer or an upgrade for a computer when I had a place to walk into and browse.
So we really have no one to blame but ourselves. We want it cheaper, faster, smaller and we want to buy it online. That’s it in a nutshell. The desktop computer is dead because we have killed it. Let us know what you think. Have we killed the PC? What are your thoughts?