Real curse of the Beige PC


Wall Street Journal has an interesting piece on “original design manufacturers” and their growing importance to the PC business. Well to me it is the reason why the PC universe is cursed by boring designs. Mass produced products that try and fit the tastes of majorities are well boring. Whether it is AOL, or Honda Civic, the tyranny of numbers is a curse on design. We are going see more of the same old same old in the electronic markets.



“the tyranny of numbers is a curse on design” but its what makes the economics work. You can’t continue to have Microsoft make the biggest chunk of money from PCs and expect others to be creative. The model disallows innovation on manufacturers part because of the economics.


There comes the next opportunity for the ODMs to enter the PC market via forward integration. The existing PC companies (gateway, dell etc.) don’t make the software or the hardware and barring dell’s, there is no business model which will help them to squeeze profits from ever declining PC prices. The ODMs can offer lower prices as the supply chain gets leaner.

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