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White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 8, 2013 22:22 UTC (Tue) by dlang (subscriber, #313)
In reply to: White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative by dashesy
Parent article: White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

That's only true if you never want to upgrade anything, never need more connectivity, don't need an optical drive, don't need much or very fast storage and that the small device + docking station is cheaper to buy

so far all the predictions of the end of the desktop have fallen flat because these conditions just aren't true.


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White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 8, 2013 22:44 UTC (Tue) by dashesy (guest, #74652) [Link]

So far yes, but nothing prevents the mobile to be connected to wall socket, it could even switch to an Intel core then. Also an optical drive could be connected to USB or Bluetooth or BLE or 802.11.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 8, 2013 23:59 UTC (Tue) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

sure, you could build it with multiple cpu's, but you can't fit as much of a heatsink in a mobile device as you can in a desktop (let alone the fan to move air across the heatsink), so you are always going to be more limited in the mobile form factor, which translates into more expensive components and less power.

for some people the convenience is worth the higher price and lower power, but for others (either because they want more power, or because they don't want to pay as much), it's not worth it.

all the people predicting the end of the desktop (either in favour of tablets or in favour of laptops) are forgetting this

the big thing that's causing sales of desktop machines to slump is that the systems are remaining 'good enough' that they aren't being forced to upgrade to keep running, and the weak economy means that they have other things to do with their money.

It's not that there are far fewer desktops in use (although some businesses have switched a lot of people to laptops), it's that they aren't being replaced as frequently, so the sales per year is lower

any market is going to have a slowdown when the market gets saturated, and that's what's happened here.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 9, 2013 5:54 UTC (Wed) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

for some people the convenience is worth the higher price and lower power, but for others (either because they want more power, or because they don't want to pay as much), it's not worth it.

Sure, but since low-level smartphone is cheaper than low-level desktop second category will leave when low-level smartphone will be “good enough” and as history showed first category is just not large enough (see: RISC workstations).

Of course it could be noted that workstations finally died just a couple of years ago thus we can be sure desktop will be with us for decade or may be even slightly more if history is any guide, but eventually it'll die, there are no doubt.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 9, 2013 6:01 UTC (Wed) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

a low level desktop can be had for a couple hundred, a phone is about double that, not counting the docking station.

This is excluding very low-level 'desktop' systems (the raspberry pi level)

the workstation market didn't vanish, it was just replaced by newer systems that outperformed the old ones. High end workstations are still around, they just have x86 chips in them that outperform the RISC based chips that were there before.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 10, 2013 0:24 UTC (Thu) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

a low level desktop can be had for a couple hundred, a phone is about double that, not counting the docking station.

Low-level phones are already below $100. They are not very functional, though. Add the fact that you can replace desktop with a phone (if phone is fast enough) but can not replace phone with a desktop… the writings are on the wall.

the workstation market didn't vanish, it was just replaced by newer systems that outperformed the old ones. High end workstations are still around, they just have x86 chips in them that outperform the RISC based chips that were there before.

Ah, no worries, then. Desktop will not die, just Windows/X/Wayland/etc will die. We will all use Android-based desktop but it'll be just a replacement of desktops with a newer systems which outperform the old ones. Got that. Makes sense.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 10, 2013 1:48 UTC (Thu) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

Ok, if you are saying that the workstation has vanished, what exactly is the difference between a 'real workstation' and a current high-end PC running Linux?

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 10, 2013 9:27 UTC (Thu) by khim (subscriber, #9252) [Link]

“A current high-end PC” was never supposed to run Linux. It was designed to be used with Windows. Old “RISC workstations” were designed with UNIX in mind. You can as well call XBox360 “a Linux system” because of the existence of Free60.

If your point is that people will grab Android devices and try to adopt them for their needs in the future and will even produce something desktop-like, then you are probably correct, but that does not change the equation much: when people talk about “death of something” (be it workstations, steam cars or desktop) they talk about “normal users”. The fact that British Steam Car Challenge set a new record for steam cars in 2009 does not mean steam cars are not dead: of course your can find some enthusiasts who will try to present curious devices of the era which is long gone, but this is totally separate question from the evolution of mainstream.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 11, 2013 20:41 UTC (Fri) by Wol (guest, #4433) [Link]

I'd like a Pi in a 10cm x 10cmm box that bolts onto the mounting points at the back of a TV. Coupled with a USB wireles keyboard and mouse, presto - one vanishing desktop. I only need a TV.

That said, I would still keep one humungous PC as a home server. My existing system has been maxed out with 16Gb (4x4Gb) RAM, and two 1Tb disks - I don't (yet) need a disk upgrade ... and 3 cores was a lot a few years ago :-)

Cheers,
Wol

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 12, 2013 4:32 UTC (Sat) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> I'd like a Pi in a 10cm x 10cmm box that bolts onto the mounting points at the back of a TV. Coupled with a USB wireles keyboard and mouse, presto - one vanishing desktop. I only need a TV.

http://www.adafruit.com/products/986

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 9, 2013 4:25 UTC (Wed) by raven667 (subscriber, #5198) [Link]

While what you say is true, the conditions haven't been met, there is no evidence that the conditions _can't_ be met. I think that future is closer than you think, desktop sales have been falling for a long time and now laptop sales are falling, what is growing is sales of phones and tablets. That future where the traditional desktop OS is marginal and not the centre of the market is in the foreseeable future.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 9, 2013 4:36 UTC (Wed) by dlang (subscriber, #313) [Link]

> there is no evidence that the conditions _can't_ be met.

actually, for some things I think it's very clear that they can't be met

you are not going to get a large heatsink and fan on any mobile.

The storage available is always going to be much less (and no, an Internet connection does not replace storage)

and there is always a price premium on being small

you are mistaking turnover for use. the turnover of desktop systems is dropping (and to a lesser degree, turnover of laptop systems). No question there. But that just means that the R&D focus of the hardware vendors isn't going to be in that area, not that the traditional desktop OS is marginal.

if everyone keeps a machine for twice as long, the sales will drop by half, but the number of people using the systems remains the same.

White paper: the economic value of the Long Term Support Initiative

Posted Oct 9, 2013 8:17 UTC (Wed) by dgm (subscriber, #49227) [Link]

> and there is always a price premium on being small

The new small is watch sized. In a couple of years a tablet or phone is going to be considered medium sized, and laptops just "big". And the desktop (actually deskunder) box I use is going to be considered frigging-super-computer-sized.


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