Stone shatters kid Rock: Gamers not as flush as they used to be
PC builder parent says users will still get support
Stone Group has killed off the Rock Group operation, which built hefty gaming laptops and notebooks, claiming it saw "no potential" in its future.
Staffordshire-based PC builder Stone bought the assets of Rock Group in late May 2008 after the firm was placed into administration by Nick Boardman, who founded the business some 16 years previously.
Daley Robinson, marketing director at Stone, told The Channel: "The retail market is extremely challenging ... going into 2013 we don't see a huge potential for that B2C gaming enthusiast sector".
He refused to provide specifics on the downturn in Rock sales but admitted the trade "reflected the difficulties" in the cash-strapped sector.
The 100,000 sq ft production line in Staffordshire, which builds PCs and servers for Stone's public sector customers, also made high-spec Rock laptops. No redundancies will be made, the company insisted.
The website that sold Rock has been closed but Robinson said existing Rock customers will have their warranties honoured by Stone's technical support team.
Robinson said it has brought on board Tim Killick to head up its group bids and infrastructure services team to bolster business with public sector customers, particularly in education.
Killick was head of strategic bids at education supplier European Electronique and has operated in that unit since May 2001. ®
A big shame indeed, Rock had some great quality machines and support.
RE: Never heard of them. What kind of moron buys a laptop for gaming anyway?
I'm guessing you don't get out much. Folks who do, and like gaming, buy a 'gaming laptop'.
I am reminded of the following definition from the Viz Profanisaurus:
- wanker (noun): a fellow road user
can't see why especially given the huge price markup. I use my work issued lenovo w510 for gaming when i am away and the thing pumps out enough heat you could use the fan outlet for cooking. i'd hate to see what happens when something even beefier is running full tilt (not to mention the inevitable crap battery)
More top the point, what serious gamer would play on a laptop. And no-one else would pay so much for one.
On the Rock[s]
In the initial takeover, the Rock side of the business was good, the products flowed due to Rock's key staff being brought into the Stone Group and the R&D, marketing was great.
Nick Boardman left Stone, and then came the downsize and enforced basic salary reductions at Stone in September 2010 which claimed the technical / R&D staff which originated from Rock.
This comes as no surprise to me at all, just like Stone lost or culled all the key Compusys staff the same happened with the key Rock staff.
Needless to say, without the key staff and zero continuity strategy it was academic from there onwards that this business sector would decay
Stone's focus is education and local government. Those lovely Rock branded gaming systems were living on borrowed time.
End of an era and a viable alternative to AlienWare...