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By | Paul Kunert 19th June 2015 08:01

MOUNTAIN of unsold retail PCs piling up in Blighty: Situation 'serious'

We'll be burning them in fireplaces instead of coal

A consumer PC bottleneck in the UK could result in some price cuts ahead of the Windows 10 launch - or so folk in the supply chain are telling us.

Distributors are sitting on roughly 60 days of client stock - around twice the amount they typically carry - and all vendors, save for HP, contributed to the mess.

“Inventory levels are challenging,” said one senior contact in distribution, “this is not a catastrophic or panic situation yet but it is serious and a cause of consternation”.

The world’s largest tech wholesaler Ingram Micro pointed out in its last set of numbers for calendar Q1 that business with the big box retailers was slower than forecast and it was hoping to sell through the surplus kit in Q2.

The problems are a hangover from 2014 when Microsoft shut down extended support for Windows XP, resulting in a massive refresh that boosted the coffers of suppliers. Most overshot demand for this year, and are paying the price.

Intel has already lowered its sales estimates for the year by $1bn, blaming the economy and fewer opportunities to swap out ageing machines running on XP.

As revealed by this week, Lenovo waved bye bye to Brit channel boss Darren Phelps and it is understood that his failure to highlight a mounting stock problem contributed to his exit.

Acer revealed this week that sales are slowing as customers hold out for Windows 10 systems, and this isn’t going to ease existing stock holdings. Not that many in the channel are anticipating huge demand for PCs when Microsoft releases the OS.

According to Digi Times, retailers in Europe are refusing to order more kit given the current stock pile and component suppliers and ODMs have seen order for new build slashed. ®

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