Ronnie05's Blog

The dawn of post PC!

Posted in Device Platforms by Manas Ganguly on January 10, 2014

The PC is dead and this year’s CES proves it- BBC’s Timothy Lee.

Going by the product roadmap declarations from Intel, the surprising popularity of Chromebooks, the visions of augmented reality and touch based future interfaces and (the old news) Google Glass – computing is evolving and the PC is a dead generation.

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The general-purpose PC became the dominant computing paradigm of the late 20th Century because computing hardware was too expensive and cumbersome for most families to own more than one or two of them. But processing power is getting smaller and cheaper, while display technologies with flexible and durable screens are getting more flexible and powerful. The PC was the jack of all trades, but master of none. In contrast, special-purpose designs can be tailor-made for a specific application. As those devices become smaller, cheaper, and more versatile, the cost, size, and complexity of conventional PCs will be more of a turnoff for ordinary users. Right now, no one is clambering for computers in their wristwatches or tables. But the combination of tiny, cheap computer chips and increasingly strong and flexible displays will eventually mean powerful computational capabilities being integrated into a wide variety of household objects.

Obviously, PCs won’t go away completely. After all, IBM still has a thriving business selling mainframes.Also, if you want to do serious spreadsheet wrangling, photo editing, or software development, a Chromebook or a Tablet probably won’t cut it. But most people have no interest in doing those things outside the office. If, like millions of people, you mostly want to check Facebook, read your email, and watch YouTube videos, then a ChromeBook works just fine. And ChromeBooks aren’t only cheaper, they also avoid many of the hassles and pitfalls—software updates, malware, baffling error messages—of Windows PCs. Most users don’t actually need all the features of a standard PC, and for them the extra complexity just means more headaches. Hard-core gamers have long been a key market for PCs. Gaming consoles aren’t new, of course, but the most sophisticated and powerful games have always relied on the superior horsepower of a full-scale PC. However PC Gaming gaint Valve, unveiled a line of special-purpose gaming devices designed to entice PC gamers into the living room. These machines should have enough computing power to satisfy even the most demanding gamers.

The key concern here for PC is that most of the vertical innovation is happening out of PC. This then is the era when the Consumer innovation on PC as a major platform is over.

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