Lenovo Admits They Dropped the ball on Touch PCs, Underestimating Demand

Windows 8 has been here for a bit now, and so far we’ve seen a trend here: touch is doing better than non-touch. Not surprising, considering Windows 8 is really designed with these kinds of interfaces in mind.

Major vendors like Dell and Sony are both reporting strong touch PC sells, even if their more casual Windows 8 tablet efforts aren’t exactly selling as wildly just yet. With that said, Lenovo is now reporting that they underestimated the demand that there would be for touchscreen Windows 8 and Windows RT PCs such as their Yoga 11.

In Lenovo’s Gerry Smith’s own words:

As you go through any major architectural transition, you try to forecast accurately how much the attach rate will be on touch [or other features]. Across every major [shift] over the past 10 years, we’re never right. The learning is, how do you respond to that? How does the industry change and evolve?

According to Smith, they will have a better supply of touch screens in the first half of 2013 and he predicts that 50 percent of Lenovo’s PCs, not including tablets, will have touchscreen within two or three years.

Before the launch of Windows 8, I remember seeing several articles on the net that said touch for all-in-one desktops and laptops just wasn’t going to be popular. People have to hunch over and it isn’t as comfortable as a keyboard and mouse. Despite these types of claims early on, it seems that the average consumer is embracing touch.

I don’t have a touchscreen monitor, but I’m thinking about eventually ditching my 24-inch Asus in favor of a similar-sized touch monitor sometime in the next 6-8 months (hoping prices start going down…). That said, I could see myself using one for swiping and scrolling. For things like highlight text and clicking icons? I doubt I’ll use touch and will probably keep to my mouse.

I imagine most Touch PC owners are using a hybrid approach to their input usage. They aren’t totally using the touchscreen in replacement of the mouse I’d wager, but instead to augment it for things that just feel more natural with touch. Gaming could also see some interesting uses when it comes to a touch PC.

What do you think of touch desktops and laptops? Interested in the idea or not?

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