Feeds

Fujitsu Siemens turning off life support for old folks PC plan

What did you do in the OS wars Grandpa?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

CeBIT Fujitsu Siemens has pulled the plug on its efforts to push a locked down Linux box at older customers.

But the German-based PC vendor said it will continue to explore other options to ensure older customers are not buried at the bottom of the digital divide.

Fujitsu Siemens launched the Simplico in Germany 2006 to serve a market it felt had been ignored – older customers with little or no experience of digital technology. The Linux box had a set range of applications and offered minimal upgrade options, all in a bid to keep it as uncomplicated as possible.

Talking at CeBIT this week, Fujitsu Siemens CTO Joseph Reger admitted the effort "was not really successful".

The main problem, he said, was support. While Fujitsu Siemens had produced a locked down Linux box with a fixed set of apps in an effort to keep cost and complexity to a minimum, older folks tended to look to younger relatives for help – and the youth tended to be Windows-grown.

Also, a locked down box presented problems with file formats and other software, eg codecs, changing so rapidly, though this was less of a problem with digital photography which was a major interest for older customers.

The company was looking at other ways of serving this market, he said, and one possibility was a hosted solution or a tie-up with a telco. However, he said, this presented its own challenges, as telcos were not always support driven.

Either way, Reger said the company was not prepared to turn its back on older citizens, saying they risked becoming increasingly isolated if they were not given a way of getting online: "It's not like the grandchildren write letters to grandpa and grandma anymore." ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
End of buttons? Apple looks to patent animating iPhone sidewalls
Filing suggests handset with display strips
Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch
Full specs for wrist-mounted device here ... but who'll buy it?
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
Reg man looks through a Glass, darkly: Google's toy ploy or killer tech specs?
Tip: Put the shades on and you'll look less of a spanner
HUGE iPAD? Maybe. HUGE ADVERTS? That's for SURE
Noo! Hand not big enough! Don't look at meee!
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.