Personal cloud to usurp personal computer by 2014: Gartner

The era of the personal computer is over, set to be usurped by the personal cloud, Gartner Inc. researchers predict in a forecast released today.

The personal cloud will replace the PCas “the centre of digital users’lives” by 2014, according to Steve Kleynhans, vice-president ofresearch at Gartner.

As consumers adopt mobile technologies in bigger numbers, they aremigrating away from their desktop PCs and seekingcloud-based solutionsto manage, store and secure the data they increasingly create, consumeand share on the go, Kleynhans said.

“Emerging cloud services will become the glue that connects the Web ofdevices that users choose to access during the different aspects oftheir daily life,” he said.

The affordability and flexibility of mobile devices, combined with theevolution of the cloud, are making this shift from PC to personal cloudpossible, Kleynhans added.

The forecast follows another Gartner report out justdays agopredicting a 4.4 per cent uptick in global PC shipments in 2012. Inthat study, however, Gartner pointed out that PC sales remain on adownward trend for the long term and emphasized that cloud adoptionwill continue to gather steam.

“PCs will face more competition as we see new media tablets based onoperating systems from Android and Microsoft, as well as the new iPad,”last week’s Gartner study stated. “Moreover, we expect the shift to thepersonal cloud will also accelerate as consumers increasingly adoptcloud-based services as part of their digital ecosystem.”

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