No one expected a pandemic to shake the world. After the first blow, with its confinements and a paralyzed economy, the consequences begin to unfold. Although it is still impossible to determine all the changes, there is no doubt that digital acceleration has been at the center of the transformation. The vast majority of activities have migrated from the physical world to the on-line. The business and social need to improve connectivity, whether due to the imposition of teleworking, distance education or to enjoy some entertainment at home, has led the personal computer sector to experience one of the sweetest moments of its life. history. A real fever.
According to the most recent data from the consultancy International Data Corporation (IDC), the sale of laptops, desktops and tablets has grown by nearly 50% worldwide in the last decade. If we limit the trend only to Spain, during 2020, in the midst of the coronavirus crisis, the sale of laptops grew by 300%, according to data provided by PcComponentes. As Diego Díaz, academic director at The Bridge, explains, society has had to recharge almost overnight. “Companies were not prepared for such a drastic change. They have gone out of their way buying all the computer equipment possible. There was a time when it was almost impossible to get hold of a microphone, a webcam or a laptop, ”he says.
As a result of this unprecedented demand after 10 years of constant declines, the prices of computers and their components have increased. The production chains have been unable to adapt to the new reality. The sector has been subjected to an unresolved congestion. This phenomenon is known as stock —This occurs when customer orders cannot be satisfied due to lack of products. There is the example of the crisis of chips, essential parts for any electronic device, such as those that integrate computers and cars, and whose manufacture is scarce, being unable to cover the volume of purchases.
At the best moment in the industry, mobility restrictions imposed by the coronavirus –which has slowed down trade flows–, changes in the production model and a new way of understanding work environments have slowed down already historic figures . For Fede Iglesias, CMO of PcComponentes, the challenge he has faced has no possible comparison. “Technology has become a basic commodity. In record time, we made decisions to reorganize the way we work, reinforcing those areas necessary to maintain maximum excellence in customer service ”, he adds.
Teleworking has also fueled the rise of computers. Training, selection processes, daily activities … The day-to-day of organizations has moved to the digital environment. And this has resulted in houses full of laptops, tablets and desktops. Teresa Neira, human resources manager at Dopp, acknowledges that the pandemic caught almost everyone on the wrong foot, which is hardly surprising that sales have soared. “The environment has changed. It has pushed the laptop sector. The companies have increased the budgets in these goods to try to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their workers ”, ditch.
Doubts about the future
The speed of the transformation hardly gives time to digest the consequences caused by the coronavirus. A good example is the United States, a country used to advancing trends. And with the computer sector it was not going to be less. After 18 months of widespread telecommuting, giants like Apple have mostly returned to work from physical headquarters. In other words, the need for computers decreases as more organizations copy the labor strategy of the technological one. “There are many things that remain unthought or prepared, such as technical equipment. We are likely to see a regression regarding sales. Of course, what is happening will serve to empower people, who have seen that they can work with a computer at home, says Díaz.
In the absence of determining the intensity of the braking, experts agree that technological change is here to stay. It is time to look for meeting points between the old and the new customs. Laptops and tablets have become indispensable in tackling this crisis. A different story is the widening digital divide for those who do not have enough resources to ride the computing wave. “What was face-to-face before is now mostly remote. It does not matter if it is a class or a meeting with clients. The ways of working have been completely transformed. And it is necessary to include the corresponding technology ”, says Neira.
We have never seen so many computers around the world before. The quantity is more surprising than the product itself, common in society for a long time. The industry continues to rub its hands at a unique moment. The pandemic has placed it in an unbeatable position to bill millions and millions of euros. Optimism reigns, but the pandemic burns stages at breakneck speed. “The rise of gaming and the importance that we give to having an increasingly intelligent home that is more appropriate to this new reality, together with the hybrid models of work and education, will continue to be important technology demanding ”, anticipates Iglesias.