Bad day to be Windows 8: New OS blamed for 14% drop in Q1 PC sales

Windows 8 Sales

Thud. That’s the sound of PC sales dropping 13.9 percent in the first quarter of this year (according to a new report by the International Data Corp analyst group). How bad is that drop? PC sales have been declining year over year, so sales of desktops and laptops were expected to drop by 7.7 percent. Instead, the drop was twice that. Even worse, that’s the single biggest drop in sales since IDC first started tracking quarterly PC shipments way back in 1994. While there are numerous factors contributing to the drop in sales, the most recent reason is the chilly reception consumers have given Windows 8. 

According to IDC, the massive user interface changes to Windows 8 have worsened the PC sale slowdown. Quoted on CNET, analyst Bob O’Donnell said, “While some consumers appreciate the new form factors and touch capabilities of Windows 8, the radical changes to the [user interface], removal of the familiar Start button, and the costs associated with touch have made PCs a less attractive alternative to dedicated tablets and other competitive devices.”

Even seasoned PC users have been stymied by the new interface in Windows 8. While it’s an operating system that begs to be touched, the most affordable PCs don’t include a touchscreen, which makes navigating through the Metro interface a frustrating experience. Plus, touchscreen PCs are still pricey, especially when compared to less expensive tablets that have a smaller learning curve.

PC makers are certainly feeling the hit, too. HP, the leading PC maker, saw its U.S. shipments drop by 23 percent in the first quarter, according to IDC. Acer was down 31 percent for the same time period. It’s not all doom and gloom, though. The second biggest PC maker, Lenovo, saw its new shipment jump 13 percent last quarter, and Samsung and ASUS also posted gains. Of course, all three of these companies are diversifying their offerings with tablets, smartphones, and other mobile devices. 

It’s strange to think that if Microsoft doesn’t push a consumer turnaround with Windows 8 and the forthcoming update, rumored to be called Windows 8.1 or Windows Blue, we may soon see the end of the traditional PC.

What do you think? Will desktop and laptop PCs be as dated as a typewriter in five years?

Deals

Amazon drops prices on Nespresso coffee and espresso machines

Amazon has dropped prices on Nespresso coffee machines and a milk frother in an Easter week sale. Nespresso's coffee appliances use single-serve capsules and one-button selection to produce barista-quality espresso and coffee at home.
Deals

The Dell G5587 gaming laptop is on sale for one of the lowest prices we’ve seen

Even diehard desktop PC gamers have to admit that gaming laptops have come a long way in recent years, and the beefy Dell G5587 – now on sale from Walmart for $300 off – is a solid sub-$1,000 machine for work and play.
Deals

Save up to 85 percent in Amazon’s one-day memory and storage sale

Amazon's one-day storage sale could be the best time of year to upgrade the capacity of your phone, tablet, or desktop PC. Some items have had their priced slashed by up to 85 percent.
Deals

Apple drops $150 off the iPhone SE with another clearance discount

Looking for new iPhone but don't want to drop a ton of cash on the XS or XR? Apple is bringing back the iPhone SE once again with up to $150 in savings. This sale is only going on while supplies last, so don't miss your chance to save.
Computing

Mueller report releases on CD, forces Congress to find PCs with disc drives

The Mueller report was released this week to Congress via CDs and congressional members had to find PCs with working disc drives to access the 400-page document. The redacted report was also released to the public on a website.
Gaming

Kick off your streaming career with our complete guide to Twitch broadcasting

Streaming games on Twitch for the first time can be daunting to say the least, but with a few simple steps, it's remarkably easy to do. Here's how to do so using a PC, Mac, Xbox One, or PlayStation 4 console.
Computing

Google Chrome will get a Reader Mode for distraction-free desktop browsing

If Google's testing of Reader Mode on the Chrome Canary desktop browser is successful, soon all Chrome users will gain access to this feature. Reader Mode strips away irrelevant content on a webpage for distraction-free browsing.
Computing

Former student uses USB Killer device to fry $58,000 worth of college’s PCs

A former student used a USB Killer device to short circuit more than $58,000 of computers at a private New York college earlier this year. The student pled guilty to the charges and sentencing is scheduled to begin in August.
Computing

AMD Ryzen CPU prices get slashed ahead of Ryzen 3000 release

AMD's Ryzen CPUs have had their prices slashed as we edge towards the release of their third generation. Whether you're a gamer or someone who needs multi-threaded performance, there's a deal for everyone with some heavy discounts to take…
Computing

The number pad on HP’s Chromebook 15 makes spreadsheet work a breeze

HP's Chromebook 15 comes with a 15.6-inch display, a metal keyboard deck with full-size keys, and a dedicated number pad, making it the second Chromebook model, following Acer's Chromebook 715, to be suited for spreadsheet work.
Computing

Worried about your online privacy? We tested the best VPN services

Browsing the web can be less secure than most users would hope. If that concerns you, a virtual private network — aka a VPN — is a decent solution. Check out a few of the best VPN services on the market.
Computing

Gaming on a laptop has never been better. These are your best options

Gaming desktops are powerful, but they tie you down to your desk. For those of us who prefer a more mobile experience, here are the best gaming laptops on the market, ranging from budget machines to maxed-out, wallet-emptying PCs.
Computing

Here's how you can download the best free music players for your Mac

Tired of your Mac's default music player? Take a look at our picks for the best free music players available for your Apple rig. Whether you're a casual listener or an audiophile, you're sure to find something that fits your needs here.
Computing

Want to make calls across the internet for less? Try these great VOIP services

Voice over IP services are getting more and more popular, but there are still a few that stand above the pack. In this guide, we'll give you a few options for the best VOIP services for home and business users.