Microsoft recently released the latest beta of Windows 10. If you have customers using 2-in-1 devices including the Surface Pro and other popular convertibles, this version of the OS has some valuable updates for them.
Chromebooks for schoolkids is a great idea. An affordable dorm-room-ready alternative to expensive MacBooks and ultrabooks — what’s not to love?
But Chromebooks for business? That’s another matter entirely. In the business world, the stakes are high, the apps are resource-intensive, and failure is not an option.
So are these lightweight devices tough enough? The short answer is yes.
There’s an app for that
To understand why, a little history will help. Getting to this point took some time.
Intel has been making smart and savvy updates to its Active Management Technology (AMT) for years. If your SMB and enterprise customers took your sage advice to spring for Intel Core vPro processors, then their maintenance and security profiles are getting better all the time.
AMT enables a technician to power on a PC — even when it’s turned off! — install new software, run diagnostics, wipe the hard drive, and update security features.
Are your customers concerned about cybersecurity? They should be. A disconcerting collection of stats recently published by Intel paints an ugly picture of the current digital landscape:
> 87% of CIOs believe their security controls fail to protect their business
> 50% of critical corporate data, on average, resides on unprotected desktops and laptops
> 81% of breaches started with stolen or weak credentials
With smartphones now so powerful, do we still need PCs?
That question dates back to at least Dec. 2014. That’s when Business Insider published an article, “Your Phone is More Powerful than the Computer in the Spaceship NASA Launched this Week.”
The writer, Matt Rosoff, was making a point about NASA’s flight computers, which are designed mainly for reliability. But he also suggested what's still a good question:
If you have customers who want to overclock their 9th Gen Intel Core unlocked processors, the Intel Performance Maximizer (IPM) can help.
No, your customers don’t actually need IPM to overclock their PCs. But assuming they have one of the supported Intel processors, IPM will alleviate the need for exhaustive research, testing and rebooting.
At first glance, ultraslim laptop PCs may seem like a paradox.
Compared with traditional laptops, ultraslims are more expensive. Yet they also offer less — lower computing power, fewer ports and smaller screens.
So why would your customers want to pay more money for less computing oomph? Portability is one big reason. These devices, as the name implies, are slimmer than most laptops and therefore a lot easier to pack and lug around.
Bent into shape
Kids today with their overclocked octa-core processors! Back in the day, we had to push our 4th generation i7 quad-cores close to melting point just to carve out a tiny edge in “World of Warcraft.”
Those days are long gone. Your customers can now configure the latest AAA-rated gaming PCs with previously unimaginable power. Even better, they can do it for a fraction of what we used to pay for a high-end rig.
Higher power, lower price
Finding a hot-rodded gaming PC for around $2,000 used to be an exercise in futility. Now it’s perfectly reasonable.
With PC sales in decline, you’d think Microsoft’s Surface business would be feeling the same pinch. After all, the company has never been known for making above-average hardware.
But in fact, Surface hardware sales rose 21% in Microsoft’s most recent financial quarter, totaling $1.3 billion. And for the company’s three most recent fiscal quarters, Surface sales totaled nearly $4.4 billion.
Desktops aren’t dying — they’re just getting smaller.
The latest crop of mini-PCs now offers lots of power and features, minus the giant footprint of a standard desktop. The PC’s future is mighty but small.
Helping your customers choose a mini-desktop used to be all about compromise: “Sure, you can save money and space, but you’ll have to give up on power and flexibility.” Fortunately, those days are long gone.