Set-tops to oust PCs for home Net access

Price and ease of use the name of the game

Net-enabled TVs, not PCs, represent the future of domestic Internet access in the US, claims a report from research agency Inteco. And while the number of home computers is predicted to grow by 60 per cent by 2003, the majority of them will go into homes that already have a PC. The number of PC-equipped US homes will grow from 44.8 per cent to just 52.7 per cent over the next five years, according to Inteco. The driving force behing home PC purchases is clearly the Internet -- Inteco's research found that eight out of ten first-time buyers bought a new PC to surf the Net. However, over the next five years, set-top boxes will become sufficiently mainstream to offer easy access to the Internet for a fraction of the cost of a desktop PC. "It's been a dream to have the PC on every desk," said Inteco analyst Mark Snowden. "That's not going to happen." ® Click for more stories

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