Notebook brands have recently adjusted their strategies in order to limit the impact tablets and smartphones have had on sales.
It seems that the strategy is going to work out for the holiday season. While overall notebook numbers are expected to see a small decline, in November it actually increased by 10%.
The two main reasons are strong HP enterprise sales and high demand in the low-cost consumer segment.
HP ordered 4 million units from ODMs, which is a 60% increase from the previous month.
All seven major vendors being Apple, Lenovo, Samsung, HP, Asus, Dell and Acer are expected to make further adjustment when it comes to their product offering which should shake things up in this space.
IDC expects the volume to grow 6.5% on year to 230 million units, also lower than its original forecast of 12.1%.
NPD DisplaySearch expects global tablet shipments to reach 254 million units, up 2% on year, but far lower than its previous forecast of 14%.
The 7″ tablet segment is being hurt by large-sized smartphones and Chromebooks are hurting tablet sales as well since they are priced aggressively at $199.
During the fourth quarter all major notebook vendors are expected to launch additional windows based products in the price range of $199 – $249 which is why the research firms have adjusted their forecasted tablet numbers.
Asus has come a long way since it was established in 1989. The company started out with just motherboards but have since expanded into various segments such as notebooks, tablets, smartphones and they will also soon enter the smartwatch market which we reported on.
The company has become the fifth largest PC vendor (Lenovo, HP, Dell and Acer are ahead of them) and in the most recent quarter they reported revenues of $3.33 billion.
While a majority of the revenue comes from their mobile division (Asus is the third largest notebook manufacturer), the motherboard / component business is still huge at 14% of the total business. Asus has a strong following amongst gamers as their graphics cards and other components are regarded as some of the best on the market.
Now Asus wants to capitalize on the strong following and brand they have in this segment with their new products released under the Strix Series. Here they are:
Strix DSP Gaming Headset
Unique 5-pole zero-crosstalk 3.5mm connector from headset
3.5mm combined audio/mic connector for smart devices and PS4
USB connector for PCs and Macs
60mm diameter, neodymium magnets
Detachable, unidirectional mic
Greater than 90% environmental noise cancellation
Dolby® Headphone, Dolby® Pro-Logic IIx, headphone amp, game spectrum profiles
Strix ClawOptical Gaming Mouse
Single gold-plated USB connector
PMW3310DH-AWQT optical sensor
5000dpi / 130 inches per second
Weighs 110g (without cable)
Works with Microsoft® Windows® XP / Vista / 7 / 8
Strix Tactic Pro Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Single gold-plated USB connector
Fully mechanical Cherry MX switches with 50-million-keystroke lifespan
Individually-backlit (orange) keys with four level settings
Up to 21 customizable keys (13 dedicated macro keys + 8 switchable macro/function (F1-F8) keys)
On-the-fly macro recording
Dual modes: plug-and-play hardware mode and software modes
Gaming mode (disables Windows key)
Macro mode (reassigns F1-F8 as macro keys)
Strix Glide Control and Strix Glide Speed Gaming Mouse Pad