The Prediction of The Development of Taiwan’s Personal Computer Industry
Taiwan’s personal computer (PC) industry began in the late 1970s as some Taiwanese companies started assembling PC kits for domestic sales, using imported microprocessors from Intel, Zilog, Texas Instrument, etc. The industry was ubsequently boosted by a big boom of electronic games on the Taiwan market. Electronics firms imported microprocessors from the U.S. and designed the circuit boards which constitute the core operating units of the machines. In its high times, producers of game machines had to wait in line for the delivery of main boards with cash in hand. The electronic game boom gave the initial impetus to Taiwan’s PC industry, whereby some primitive design capabilities were established. In the early 1980s, PC industry in Taiwan was nonetheless dominated by American multinational firms. Companies like Atari, Wang, WISE were producing PC-related products for export to the U.S. market to take advantage of Taiwan’s low-cost labor and engineering capabilities. But local companies quickly seized the opportunities to join the market by serving as subcontractors and OEM producers for brand marketers. Using its dense production networks developed since the 1960s, Taiwan competed successfully in the world’s PC industry by separating the production of computers into small segments in which small firms developed their niche and prevailed. As a result of refined division of labor, there were hundreds of specialized producers in the field of mother boards, keyboards, monitors, mice, add-on cards, and so on. Each product was sold separately to system producers for integration, or was combined with other products to form a subsystem for resale in the international markets. A major development of Taiwan’s PC industry was the emergence of notebook computers in the 1990s. It seems logical that the manufacturers of desk-top PCs will naturally make a...
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