The PC never died

Despite its shrinking market, the PC remains the premiere platform to showcase bleeding-edge technologies.

At this point, the PC’s woes are well known; I’m not going to extensively dissect any market trends or make any bold predictions about the future of the PC here. I may just snap, though, if I hear one more person say “the PC is dead” anytime soon.

Yes, fewer and fewer desktop systems are being bought as of late, but it has nothing to do with the technology within the systems or some inherent deficiency with the PC. It’s a matter of shrinking IT budgets, competition from ultra-mobile devices like tablets and smartphones (which are technically PCs in my option), fewer incentives to upgrade, and economies worldwide that remain in disarray. If corporations or consumers don’t have the money for new PCs, they’re not going to buy them. And if you’ve only got a few bucks to spend on a new piece of kit, you’re not going to upgrade or replace a PC if it’s still running well. Plus, smartphones and tablets are hot right now.

I do, however, want to remind everyone of an important point - the PC remains the premiere platform for showcasing and exploiting numerous technologies. Gaming? The PC rules. Content creation? Try editing and producing an HD video on a smartphone. 3D Modeling? Try to get the folks at Pixar to dump their workstations. It’s not going to happen.

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That’s 24.8 megapixels of gaming goodness. Try doing that on another platform.

Want further proof of the PC’s technological leadership? Check out some of the recent posts on the Extreme Windows Blog. A few days back, a post went up entitled, “Pushing the 12K PC Gaming Boundary at 1.5 Billion Pixels per Second." In that post, Gavin Gear outfits a Windows 8 PC with a powerful graphics subsystem and connects it to three Sharp PN-K321 4K displays. In total, the setup offered up 11,520x2,160 pixels of screen real estate, or roughly 24.8 megapixels. That’s the equivalent of 12 full-HD displays with 1,920x1,080 resolutions. Once properly configured and tweaked, the system was able to play a DirectX 11 game at smooth frame rates. Think about that for a moment. Try to imaging a console, tablet, or smartphone having the horsepower to pull off a feat like that. Heck, some of today’s tablets and smartphones can’t even render Candy Crush Saga smoothly on a single HD display, let alone something with even more advanced graphics.

Admittedly, very few people would/could consider a setup like the one in the post. But the fact remains that if someone wanted to put something like that together, using a PC is the only way to do it.

Copyright © 2013 IDG Communications, Inc.

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