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Cheaper brands hurt assembled-PC makers

11-June-2005
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Cheaper brands hurt assembled-PC makers

The assembled personal computer (PC) business in the state is gradually shrinking as low-cost branded PCs are easily available.

Measures announced in recent budgets have lessened the price gap between branded and assembled computers. A branded PC is now available for as low as Rs 9,000. These PCs also come with a guarantee of quality and support from national and international vendors.

Michael V, branch manager, Dynalog India Ltd, an assembler of PCs said: "The shift to branded PCs from assembled ones has happened because the price difference between the categories has narrowed of late."

Aviv Divekar, managing director, Astech Informatics Ltd, another dealer in assembled PCs, said: "Laptops and notebooks are not luxury devices anymore as some models are available for as low as Rs 30,000. Most customers going for a laptop have big pockets and have the budget to spend a larger sum of money. Therefore, assembled notebooks would cater only to a smaller segment."

"Assembling business has declined by 25 per cent as customers are preferring branded computers. However, only corporate clients and end-users of branded PCs are provided after-sales service. So the assembled business is here to stay," Divakar said.

Branded laptops generally offer three-year warranty and complete technical assistance.

This is essential, as laptops are susceptible to technical problems.

Experts in the computer-assembled business said that, earlier, there was a difference of 30-40 per cent between prices of branded and unbranded PCs.

However, a reduction in prices of branded PCs has hampered the 'assembled' business market. Assembled PCs are also costlier by four per cent due to the countervailing duty on components.

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