Five tech sectors staring into the abyss

The end is nigh for some areas of the tech industry. We look at which ones could be six feet under in the not too distant future.

As we all know, nothing lasts forever.

Regardless of how wonderful a technology appears to be at the point of creation, it will eventually be replaced by something better.

Businesses need to keep up with what technologies could be redundant in years to come. If they don't, they'll risk being left with an IT infrastructure as healthy and as useful as a dying slug.

We take a look at five areas of the IT industry facing extinction areas where organisations may need to consider a complete rethink in how they are managed.

Some of these sectors may survive, others will not. Pay a visit to the business IT graveyard in the not too distant future and you might see their names engraved on tombstones next to the likes of floppy disks and dial-up modems.

Netbooks

If netbooks do become a thing of the past in the next few years, they would have had a very short life indeed. There are a number of clear indicators these little devices will be kicking the bucket some time soon.

First off, there's the figures. Over the last four months, sales of netbooks have declined rapidly. In December, year-over-year sales in Western Europe were down 18.4 per cent, according to research firm Context. In January they had fallen 22.5 per cent and in February 34 per cent.

These declines come despite netbook price drops. Across the continent, average netbook sales prices went down from 236 (205) in January 2010 to 218 (189) this year.

"They're still not selling in huge numbers," said Context's mobile analyst Salman Chaudhry.

"It looks very likely that the tablet market is replacing the netbook market I think it'll still have a small presence but no way near the peaks we saw in 2009 when they were defying all vendor demand."

Then there's comment from within the industry. Apple chief operating officer Tim Cook said last year that he was unable to "think of a single thing a netbook does well." Even earlier in 2010, Steve Jobs described netbooks as "just cheap laptops."

It's obvious Apple has an agenda here, but when an actual netbook vendor is compelled to put out a statement saying it will continue to produce the devices, you know something must be up.

Earlier this year, a senior employee at Acer reportedly said the manufacturer would be leaving the netbook segment altogether to focus on tablets. Although Acer then came out to assure the public it would continue making netbooks, it admitted "the computer market is changing."

Indeed it is, and one change that looks likely is the usurping of netbooks by tablets. Convertibles like the Dell Inspiron Duo could also put a dent in netbook sales, although that particular machine failed to astound IT PRO.

Nevertheless, the IT Grim Reaper is starting to swing his scythe in the direction of netbooks.

Featured Resources

Consumer choice and the payment experience

A software provider's guide to getting, growing, and keeping customers

Download now

Prevent fraud and phishing attacks with DMARC

How to use domain-based message authentication, reporting, and conformance for email security

Download now

Business in the new economy landscape

How we coped with 2020 and looking ahead to a brighter 2021

Download now

How to increase cyber resilience within your organisation

Cyber resilience for dummies

Download now

Recommended

Apple doubles down in the US with $430 billion investment
business intelligence (BI)

Apple doubles down in the US with $430 billion investment

27 Apr 2021
Splunk debuts a new suite of cloud security solutions
Security

Splunk debuts a new suite of cloud security solutions

22 Jun 2021
Patent shows Apple is working on improving iPhone’s AR capabilities
augmented reality (AR)

Patent shows Apple is working on improving iPhone’s AR capabilities

22 Jun 2021
Nvidia Jetson chips make IoT devices vulnerable to attack
vulnerability

Nvidia Jetson chips make IoT devices vulnerable to attack

22 Jun 2021

Most Popular

How to find RAM speed, size and type
Laptops

How to find RAM speed, size and type

16 Jun 2021
What is HTTP error 400 and how do you fix it?
Network & Internet

What is HTTP error 400 and how do you fix it?

16 Jun 2021
Ten-year-old iOS 4 recreated as an iPhone app
iOS

Ten-year-old iOS 4 recreated as an iPhone app

10 Jun 2021