The general rule on hardware is that it gets cheaper as you go, and for the last six years or so, that’s always been the case. Now though, new research indicates that we could see PC prices rise again this year.
According to research from Gartner, one of the biggest reasons for this will be the rising cost of memory. Due to increased demand for flash memory in mobile devices (let’s not forget the vast and quickly growing smartphone market), memory has been something that’s already seen price hikes in recent months, and that’s a trend that looks set to continue if the folks at Gartner are to be believed.
TomsHardware is carrying word that this year could well see a rise of 2.8% on average PC prices. The rise won’t be entirely memory-based of course; blame will also be pointed at the rising cost of LCD panels. Moreover, it seems that the previously reported potential hard drive shortage is rearing its head again.
Last month, we reported on the fact that many hard drive manufacturers had moved almost entirely to producing 2.5” drives to supply the fast-paced netbook and notebook markets. Suddenly, just before Christmas, it appears that the world and its mother decided it needed a desktop, causing a fairly sudden shift towards 3.5” drives.
Any rise in PC prices could well be compounded by low stock of 3.5” drives, if it ever materialises. Still, it’ll be interesting to see just how much prices rise by, if indeed they end up rising at all. While analysts don’t make a name for themselves by making mistakes, we’ll still be taking this one with a pinch of salt, given the old “financial climate” at the moment.