Microsoft’s new touch-based remake of Windows is off to a slower than expected start, says HP’s PC boss Todd Bradley.
Speaking with Bloomberg TV’s Emily Chang, Bradley said, “Clearly it’s as been reported, it was a slower start than many people expected. But I think as we’ve gone through January, as we look at retail sales week to week, as we look at web sales week to week, we see continued momentum and continued growth. So, I think the combination of a very new experience, a very touch driven experience, and lots of choices over the holidays, it’s not to be unexpected.”
HP is just the latest in an increasingly long list of PC makers to say Windows 8 failed to provide a jolt of life to the dying PC industry. Here’s who else has been let down:
- Acer’s president of the Americas said, “It’s a slow start, there’s no question.”
- Fujitsu’s president said Windows 8 demand was “weak.”
- Asus CFO said at the end of October, “Demand for Windows 8 is not that good right now.”
The reason Windows 8 is off to a slow start has less to do with Windows 8, and more to do with the PC business overall. Gartner reported that PC shipments fell 4.3% in the fourth quarter worldwide. Windows 8 is simply entering a market in decline. Consumers are buying iPads, and other tablets instead of full-on PCs.
There is a very small silver lining for Microsoft in all of this. PC makers haven’t been able to produce inexpensive computers that really take advantage of the touch capabilities of Windows 8, NPD’s Stephen Baker previously told us. If touch-based laptops can come down in price to be more competitive with iPads, then there’s a chance Windows 8 sales could help the PC business.
From a bigger picture view for Microsoft, it has repeatedly stressed that it is selling as many Windows 8 licenses as it did Windows 7 licenses. And even if the PC market is weak, in the near term this is good for Microsoft.
It reports earnings next week, so we’ll hear much more about it soon.
Here’s Bradley. His quote comes at 1:30:
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