While consumer-oriented Linux has been on a rise of late due
to healthy sales of the ASUS Eee PC, and Dell which offers a range
of notebooks and desktops preloaded with Ubuntu on their
website, the store shelves don't quite seem ready for the March of
the Penguins to reach their desktops.
Wal-Mart, the sole brick-and-mortar retailer of Everex's $199 gPC, has effectively
pulled the Linux-based machine off its store shelves, citing a lack of
demand. Oddly enough, the in-store supplies of the gPC were sold out across the
approximately 600 stores that received shipments -- but Wal-Mart spokesperson
Melissa O'Brien stated that "This really wasn't what our customers were
Online buyers didn't appear to share these feelings, and the
Wal-Mart.com site is now offering
the second-generation gPC2 for sale, in addition to Everex's CloudBook,
an ultraportable Linux laptop aiming to cut into the Eee PC's market.
With competition in the low-budget PC market heating up in 2008, the lack of
licensing fees could mean that Linux will be found on many more desktops and
laptops -- but if the sales of the gPC are any indication, it may still be some
time before it gains a serious foothold in the mainstream retail market.
According to Net
Applications, Linux held on to only 0.67%
market share in January 2008. This figure pales in comparison to OS X which
commanded 7.57% of the market and Windows which continues to outshine all with
91.46% of the OS market.