Dell excited by wearable tech market, smart watches

But company admits slow tablet sales, says "the jury is still out" on Windows 8 and tablets; again hints at going private.
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Dell is considering moving into the wearable computing sector to grow its revenues and counter its declining PC sales.

Sam Burd, Dell's global vice-president of personal computing, told The Guardian: "We're exploring ideas and looking at the technology in that space.

"There are challenges in cost, and how to make it a really good experience. But the piece that's interesting is that computers are getting smaller. Having a watch on your wrist – that's pretty interesting, pretty appealing.

"Looking ahead five years, we expect devices and form factors to continue to change. There will still be a need for 'static' computing on desktops, but there will be a real need for mobile devices. There's a lot of discussion about how that fits into wearable devices like we've seen with Google Glass and watches. We're looking at a world of lots of connected devices."

"I don't see any magic new form factor like the iPad – I don't think anybody saw how that was going to change devices. But the number of [computing] devices per person is exploding."

Burd also said Windows 8 on tablets had not sold so strongly with some of Dell's business customers.

"Businesses are slow to adopt a new operating system," he added. "But tablets really need Windows 8 to sell well. Still, it is encouraging to see some businesses deploying Windows 8 and tablets. It's going to take some time, and the jury is still out.

"IDC's numbers show that Windows 8 on tablets is still far smaller than the iPad, but there are successes. Maybe in a few years when we get to Windows 8 tablets being a third or 40 per cent of tablet volume we can feel it's happening. Tablets are definitely an important piece of the computing business." 

Dell's PC revenues declined by nine per cent to $8.9bn in the three months ending May 2013. The company has been pushed into third place in the global PC market by China's Lenovo, which currently sits behind HP.

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