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The evolution of the desktop PC

October 2011

Notebooks, smartphones, and tablets are ubiquitous in the computing landscape. Demand for smaller, lighter, and more mobile devices is growing and the future is bright for products that can deliver.

But analysts have noted an emerging trend—mobile workers are telling IT they prefer a tablet for the field and a desktop for the office.

Despite red-hot growth of tablets and smartphones in recent years, desktops remain competitive because of their lower price-for-performance, their scalability and their ‘work horse’ capacity. [1]

The evolving desktop

Like everything in the computing world, the desktop is evolving. Now, desktops are becoming a part of a broader computing environment that’s filled with smartphones, tablets and notebooks.

Desktops are morphing from computing-only tools into collaboration hubs—creating and distributing content through the “spokes” of multiple mobile devices. Also, as cloud technology becomes more common in homes and businesses, desktop PCs will help navigate an increasingly complex information landscape. With more information coming from feeds, micro-blogs, live streams and timelines, customers will need technology that can sift relevant information from irrelevant and then help deliver and manage it effectively.


Enter the all-in-ones. All-in-One (AIO) PCs are desktop computers with the monitor and the central processing unit (or CPU) housed in a single “body.” AIOs have all the power and performance of traditional PCs, but with sleeker design features and sometimes include large touch-enabled screens. AIOs are enjoying a bump from higher customer demand and retailers are responding by devoting more shelf space to them. Though lighter, more compact, and more energy efficient than other desktop/monitor combinations, AIOs are computing powerhouses. Their smaller footprints work well in businesses and homes where limited space is a consideration—leaving room for accessories like printers, scanners, and copiers in tight spaces.

There’s no doubt; AIOs are finding their place within businesses of today. The AIO is becoming a fundamental piece of hardware in a cadre of touch-enabled mobile products, often from the same manufacturer. Machines like the HP TouchSmart 9300 are complementing, rather than competing with more mobile products like HP’s EliteBook Notebook PCs.

Traditional desktops

Traditional tower desktops continue to deliver in our rapidly growing mobile world. Machines like the HP 500B Microtower PC and the HP Compaq 6200 Pro Small Form Factor PC have a strong small, medium and enterprise-business level demand and remain industry standards for handling the heavier loads these environments require.

What’s next?

Demand for AIOs is expected to increase. A survey by Gap Intelligence indicated a 28% growth in the number of touch AIOs available within its group of surveyed retailers—and that’s just since late December, 2010. [2] IDC research shows that among commercial PC users worldwide, the intent to purchase AIO solutions will rise from 9.9% to 15.7% in the next 12 months. [3]

Why HP?

The new HP AIO PCs are beautifully-packaged powerful desktops that can meet all your computing needs. As technology evolves and more of our communication and collaboration is done virtually, these tools will continue to be an integral part of our lives. With a focus on clutter-free design, energy-savings, design with the environment in mind, and computing power in a range of price points, HP continues to lead in versatile AIO offerings and provide customers with a host of options, both touch and non-touch.

For more information
Why AIOs
HP Desktop PCs
HP 500B Microtower PC
EliteBook Notebook PCs

[1] Thomson, Keenan. “Desktop PCs: Seeking relevance in a mobile world.” Computerworld. July 19, 2011.
[2] Gap Intelligence, Desktop AIO retail share report, July, 2011.

[3] "2010 Commercial PC Buyer Survey." IDC #227655, April 2011.


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