Goldman flag on Intel stock means IT must adapt to iPads

Drive to consumerization, work-on-any-device IT is accelerating

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A warning from Goldman Sachs that the investment potential of Microsoft and Intel have slipped because of their weak response to growth of tablets is mostly focused on investors, but is a red flag to anyone making strategic IT decisions as well.

In a report published over the weekend, Goldman analyst Bill Shope predicted that as many as a third of the PCs sold during 2011 will actually be tablets.

That will bring the growth rate in PC sales from the low teens -- as predicted by IDC and Gartner -- to between 5 percent and 8 percent, the report said.

More importantly, the tablets will not run on an Intel/Microsoft platform that has is the basis of almost all of corporate computing, including security, application support and access so applications, networks and data.

Goldman hardware analyst Bill Shope, which was published over the weekend.

Most of the tablets will run either iOS or Android (he left out ChromeOS) Shope wrote. "If this is the case and our tablet forecast is anywhere near accurate, this would be the first time in three decades that a non-Wintel technology has made legitimate inroads into personal computing," the report continued.

Despite studies predicting users -- especially those between 18 and 27 years old -- prefer to use smartphones, tablets or other things that are not PCs, Microsoft and Intel have had their feet stuck in the mud.

Even Microsoft's designated software visionary, Ray Ozzie, warned in his retirement speech that Microsoft was moving into a "post-PC world" and would have to adjust to both new devices and new networked platforms like the cloud.

Microsoft and Intel are apparently waiting until early 2011, when Intel's upcoming Oak Trail processor for mobile devices hits the OEM channel for both smartphones and tablets.

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