Custom-Built Computers: An Emerging or Declining Trend?
Fort Lauderdale computer repair firms are noting a new trend of interest in "white box" computers - machines re-assembled from available processors, motherboards and other hardware components - due to the sluggish economic times.
The market for such products is not new, but technology analysts and Fort Lauderdale computer repair firms say the demand has increased in the poor economy.
Others believe the opposite - or at least acknowledge that some consumers are more strongly lured to the bottom-line prices offered by major computer brands.
The conflicting beliefs are a testament to the fact that the white-box market is difficult to calculate in terms of total sales because of its breadth.
From a units-shipped perspective, white-box market share in the desktop PC segment fell from 37 percent in the first quarter of 2007 to 26 percent in the second quarter of 2009, according to Ft. Lauderdale computer repair analysts.
Another factor that is likely contributing to such a drop? The widespread emergence of the moderately-priced, smaller machines known as netbooks.
As PC notebook sales outpace desktop sales, the future of the white-box market consequently starts to come into serious question, some technicians believe.
Unlike PCs, notebooks are harder for smaller, independent market players to compete with in a sense, since major brands such as Dell and Hewlett-Packard offer bargain prices.
That advantage stems from their ability to buy parts in high volume.
The pricing for some of systems are higher than what a customer would pay at Best Buy or other big-box retailers, but white box computer purchases - and repairs from computer services in general - offer custom products and attentive customer service.
At least that's what many providers will likely argue.
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