For corporate users, big disks matter, NCs don't
June 26, 1998
by Kristi Essick
(IDG) -- What do corporate PC users in the U.S. want today? According a recent study by International Data Corp. (IDC), they want machines with big disk drives and prices less than $1,000. They're also not eager to adopt network computers.
An IDC survey of 300 information systems purchasing employees at midsize and large companies found that corporate users want PCs with large amounts of memory and hard drives that can hold at least 2G bytes. The Framingham, Mass.-based research firm also found that they are less concerned about having the most-powerful processors and DVD drives. In fact, 88% of respondents plan to buy PCs with disk drives of 2G bytes or more, while hardly any want to buy DVD systems, according to the report, "Customer Directions And Buying Behavior: The 1998 Commercial Desktop Survey."
Companies are willing to pay top dollar for fully loaded machines, but are also interested in buying more basic PCs at less than $1,000, IDC said. Half of the respondents said that the idea of purchasing sub-$1,000 desktops is very or somewhat appealing.
Multimedia options such as videoconferencing and video playback are of less interest to the corporate users surveyed; only 10% expect to purchase desktop machines with videoconferencing capabilities within the next 12 months, the study said. This number has grown only slightly from the 7% who expected to buy video-enabled systems in 1997. Network computers are still struggling to gain a foothold in corporate markets, with just 14% of companies having machines already installed and another 10% evaluating them, according to the report. NetPCs, the concept backed by Microsoft Corp., are even less popular, with only 7% of the companies having already placed orders for the boxes and another 9% running them in trials.
Meanwhile, use of Microsoft's Windows NT operating system is on the rise. In fact, 32% of the respondents said they plan to buy NT-based machines in the next 12 months. Meanwhile, Windows 95 was a popular operating system deployed by a majority of the companies, and Windows 3.x has virtually disappeared, IDC said. The top three applications that companies plan in the next 12 months are office suites, browsers and presentation software.
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