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The Peer-to-Peer blog is a forum for Channel Partners readers with the goal of stimulating discussion among partners about important issues impacting their business. The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of Channel Partners editors or publishers. If you are interested in submitting a blog, please contact Managing Editor Buffy Naylor, buffy.naylor@informa.com.

Personal Computing vs. Personal Computers

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By David Byrd

Personal computers (PCs) remain the primary workhorse for the business employee. However, the landscape is rapidly changing. While Apple OSX is making inroads as an alternative to Microsoft Windows, it is relatively speaking insignificant. Windows continues to dominate the business PC market with 95 percent unit penetration. However, according to Forrester, that penetration level falls dramatically when considering the advent of new device types such as tablets and smartphones. When these personal computing devices (PCDs) are included Microsoft’s computing unit share falls to 30 percent.

This is important to service providers including ANPI ZONE as each needs to gauge the impact of PCDs on their existing network infrastructures and future product offerings. Personal computing is driving the development of operations and support systems, security policies, telecom and data agreements and the direction of IT as a whole. Moreover, as predicted, more data is consumed over Wi-Fi networks than LTE.

During the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2012, John Chambers, CEO of Cisco, referred to the Internet of Everything. The Internet of Everything is an odd phrase to essentially describe using the Internet to access, control and manage just about anything. People either are able to or will be able to use the Internet to control home appliances, security systems, HVAC, water, lighting, automobiles, etc. Utility companies can improve energy and water management and conservation. Manufacturers can incorporate interfaces into products of all types to both be controlled by purchasers but to also proactively report changes in status. This will lead to dynamic and interactive monitoring by health care professionals, improved tracking of company assets, better law enforcement, and more accurate and timely equipment diagnosis, with all of it driven by PCDs.

By 2016 it is expected that 1.6 billion smartphones will be sold. This is according to Business Insider Intelligence. In conjunction with the growth of smartphones, application downloads will increase to more than 300 billion per year. Certainly, not every product or service will be an obvious candidate to leverage this massive growth and interest in the Internet of Everything, but as service providers we need to go through the process of determining whether an application, service or solution should have an Internet or personal computing component.

Transitioning from a TDM to IP infrastructure or network should be a given for every service provider. The unknown is determining the best strategy to leverage the new infrastructure to support existing customers and grow revenues through expanded offerings and increased market penetration.

David Byrd is chief marketing officer and executive vice president of channel sales for ANPI ZONE . He previously spent five years as vice president of marketing and sales for Broadvox and before that was vice president of channels and alliances for Eftia and Telcordia.

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