May 23, 2012
Dell Bets Big On Windows 8 And Touchscreens
Michael Harper for RedOrbit.com
Dell hasn´t been doing very well lately. Last week, they made news as some pretty sexist remarks were made by a Dell representative at a Dell-hosted conference in Denmark.
This week, Dell released their first quarter results, and they weren´t pretty. Down from Q1 2011, Dell´s profit shrank by 33% while their revenue slipped by 4% to $14.4 billion. Executives from Dell, including CFO Brian Gladden and CEO Michael Dell have blamed these numbers on factors such as the current economic climate, flooding in Thailand and even their lack of participation in the market for low-margin PCs in emerging Chinese markets.
Following in the footsteps of RIM, Dell has said they will be moving from the broad consumer-based market and into the enterprise market, where their Dell Enterprise Solutions and Services sector “revenue grew 2 percent year over year to $4.5 billion and contributed half of Dell´s gross margin.”
Keeping an eye on enterprise, Michael Dell announced plans for the company´s future as it pertains to Microsoft´s newest version of Windows, Windows 8.
Dell, it seems, will be betting large on tablets.
Dell said he expects sales to pick up whenever Windows 8 is released, saying sales may have slumped as businesses are waiting for the new OS before buying all new hardware and software.
"Unlike other Windows transitions, this is a transition where you are going to need a new PC," said Dell, according to PC World.
Dell then mentioned the newest version of Windows will place an emphasis on touch screens and said this would drive more businesses to buy these tablet devices.
While excitement may be high for the new devices and operating system, Dell said many companies are still working their way to older versions.
"Corporations are still adopting Windows 7, so we don't think there will be a massive adoption of Windows 8 early on," he said.
It would appear that so far Michael Dell´s hopes are based on a few unknowns and unreleased devices and services.
Despite this, Dell says his company is ready to bring whatever devices, touch screen tablets or otherwise, to the enterprise market.
"The product refresh cycle associated with this release of Windows is likely to be very different from other releases, but it's hard to know exactly what that looks like. We're preparing a full complement of products, and we'll be ready with those,” said Dell, according to the BBC.
Of course, Dell has tried once before to break into the tablet market with their ill-fated Streak and, most recently, their Latitude and Inspiron tablets which run Android. But will Windows 8 really help to narrow the tablet gap between iPad and the others?
"We see Windows 8 as opportunity for all the PC manufacturers to reclaim the huge ground that they have lost to Apple and some of the other Android tablet makers," said Chris Green, technology analyst at Davies Murphy Group Europe, according to the BBC.
"You can't underestimate how much the sector has hit PC sales. The challenge for Dell is that it will be competing against Acer, Lenovo and others - but the sheer size of the company should act as an advantage."