Dell Plans Cloud Acquisition
Nov 2 (Reuters) - Dell Inc (NASDAQ:DELL), the world's No.2 PC maker, will announce an acquisition related to cloud computing on Tuesday, its chief executive said, while ramping up its tablet PC line to compete with rivals such as Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL).
Speaking at an event in Hong Kong, Michael Dell also said that he had received feedback from developers that it was easier to develop smartphone software using Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows operating system than Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) popular free Android system.
"We're going to have a significant number of new tablets in the next year," Dell said. "There're lots of debate about the size of the market, who's buying these devices, and those questions always emerge when there's a new form factor."
Dell did not give any further details of the acquisition, but the company was recently involved in a bidding battle with rival Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) to acquire high-end storage maker 3PAR.
Cloud computing is an industry term that refers to providing software and computing power over the Internet such as web-based email, and has been touted by many tech companies as the next big trend in the PC sector.
Microsoft launched its new operating system for mobile devices earlier this month, in a move that is seen by analysts to be its last chance to catch up with Apple and Google's Android smartphones after having squandered its early lead.
"What's interesting about the smartphone space is how it's changing into a more open-modular system," Dell said. "It's staggering that Android has now surpassed Apple in terms of originations and this is happening at a much, much faster rate than what folks had envisioned."
PC companies have increasingly begun looking to mobile devices and other corporate solutions to diversify away from the heavily commoditised personal computer, where net margins can fall to the low single digits for companies such as Acer (2353.TW).
Dell unveiled a 7-inch tablet PC it calls the Streak in September following a 5-inch model earlier that month, joining rivals such as Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) in competing with Apple in the emerging tablet PC space. (Reporting by Kelvin Soh; Editing by Jacqueline Wong)