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Why PC Sales Are Declining 564

First time accepted submitter Benedick writes "I have a four year old desktop and a three year old notebook. Why haven't I upgraded to a new machine? Because they still work great. PC sales aren't declining because of Windows 8. They are declining because our PCs are so good, they last a lot longer. Will Oremus of Slate explains it better than I can."
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Why PC Sales Are Declining

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 12, 2013 @07:59PM (#43437165)

    Fire, swimming pools, hot tubs, lava, shotguns, Gallagher, cannons, M80s, trebuchets, toddlers, flame throwers, tanks, grandmothers, that fat gamer dude, gorillas, tornadoes, ninjas, wood chippers... well, you get the idea. In fact, when it comes to destroying a computer kittehs are not anywhere near the top ten.

  • by DigiShaman ( 671371 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @08:10PM (#43437265) Homepage

    PC enthusiast market is dying. Intel plans on having motherboard manufactures solder the CPU directly to the PCB. High end CPU to high end motherboard. Low end CPU to low end motherboard. About the only system you can come close to building on your own in the future will have to be workstation/server class hardware. That means expensive Xeons. God knows what AMD will do. And then there's the whole Windows OS being abandoned as we know it in favor of a tablet OS (Win8).

    Serious question. Where does that leave nVidia? The market has been shifting toward mobile low-powered devices for a long time. That, and Intel's integrated video sub-system is butter smooth in 2d, and good enough for 3d. Commodity video hardware is dead. Thank Intel for that. Their high-end will still be niche enterprise market though.

    As for the future of gaming? Phones, Tablets, Consoles including newer generations of Apple TV (Pippin reincarnated) , and mini-itx platforms would be my guess.

  • by tepples ( 727027 ) <{tepples} {at} {}> on Friday April 12, 2013 @08:22PM (#43437351) Homepage Journal
    You won't find them in an Apple Retail Store or on, but I'm told a lot of local Mac dealers sell Macs with Windows OEM already installed in Boot Camp.
  • by _xeno_ ( 155264 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @08:22PM (#43437359) Homepage Journal

    Windows 8 sucks so much, it can lift matter back past the event horizon of a black hole.

    My favorite Windows 8-ism, and I swear this is true, is that they removed the ability to shutdown the computer.

    No, really. They did.

    There's still a "shutdown" option in the new "power charm." It even brings your computer to a power-off state. It just doesn't shutdown the OS.

    Instead, "shutdown" logs you out (closing all your open applications), and then hibernates the machine rather than shutting down.

    The concept is that this makes booting "faster" but in my experience, it's at best a wash. (I think booting fresh is slightly faster than restoring the entirety of memory.) In any case, you still have to wait for all your applications to restart when you log in, so what's the point?! Plus, generally when I choose "shutdown," it's because I want the OS is shut all the way down for some reason. If all I wanted to do was turn the power off, I'd just hibernate the machine.

    Which brings me to my next point. The Hibernate option does not exist in the "Power charm." You can't Hibernate anymore. Apparently there's a setting somewhere that can reenable this feature, but searching for "hibernate" in the new Start Menu didn't find anything useful.

    Anyway, long rant short: Windows 8 managed to break the ability to turn your PC off!

  • by Darinbob ( 1142669 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @09:14PM (#43437651)

    There is an option to disable this and do a normal shutdown and boot. There is still a control panel so maybe it can be found there.

    I did notice that when you power off, that after the screen goes blank that the computer is still active with the hard drive light still flashing for another 10 seconds. If you kill power this way (via power strip) I wonder what gets screwed up. I think some genius decided that since 90% of people never turn off their computer that everyone else can be ignored.

  • by Tridus ( 79566 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @10:01PM (#43437919) Homepage

    If you're buying professional versions of Windows, you should have downgrade rights. It might come with 8 on it, but you can just remove it and put 7 on provided driver support is there (and considering almost no enterprise is going to 8, there are business class laptops with full driver support in 7).

  • by thoper ( 838719 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @10:02PM (#43437921)

    we couldn't find any laptop vendor supplying 3rd generation i7 powered laptop that runs Windows 7

    i'm not sure if i missundestood you, english is not my primary language, but srsly?!?!!facets=80770~0~16063830,226292~0~14720685&p=1 []

    took me 60 seconds, first stop.

  • by ZipK ( 1051658 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @10:25PM (#43438029)

    I used to buy prebuilt boxes (HP, Dell, Acer) with Win7, and I used them as they are, with Win7 OS. But if I am required to buy Win8 when I need another box I will instead buy parts and build a PC this way - something I haven't done for a long, long time.

    Dell or HP would be happy to sell you a Win7 machine:

  • by Sir Holo ( 531007 ) on Friday April 12, 2013 @10:34PM (#43438067)
    MpVpRb: If I could buy a new machine, clone my hard drive and go, I would upgrade about three times as often.

    I've done that cloning trick multiple times with Macs, when moving from one lab to another, or upgrading a laptop. It is a beautiful experience.

    Or, if your new laptop has a newer OS, the Mac's Migration Assistant still makes moving over completely painless. I've done this a couple of times, too. Usually no applications barf or ask for activation, etc. And again, everything is where you left is. A beautiful experience.

    And, (now I'm sounding all fanboi), I recently smashed my iPhone. Bought a replacement, wiped the old one right there in the Store. Got home, plugged in the new phone, and iTunes figured out that I had a new iPhone. It copied the backup right over, along with apps, settings, old messages, etc. Everything right where I left it. So painless.
  • by VortexCortex ( 1117377 ) <VortexCortex.project-retrograde@com> on Saturday April 13, 2013 @12:19AM (#43438539)

    Why buy a new system, I ask??

    Because for the same price ($500) I got the same RAM, a 3.8ghz quad core APU capable of playing last years games and able to crossfire to double it's GPU for $80 (later), and a much larger hard (500GB). Took 20 minutes to assemble it. Probably took me less time to just buy what I wanted, and put it together than you did stumbling around looking for deals and redeeming coupons. Additionally: I got a much better machine, with all new parts, which will last a few more years than yours will. That's why.

    I mean, if you're time's worth so damn much, you can't spare 20min to assemble the system, then you'll be making enough money that price isn't a consideration -- What's a few hundred dollars? I suspect this isn't actually the case, I mean, if it was you'd just buy the best thing possible at the time so that you wouldn't have to waste time upgrading that crappy 160GB drive later.

When you make your mark in the world, watch out for guys with erasers. -- The Wall Street Journal