IBM introduces new leasing plans to aid PC management

IBM has introduced three new PC leasing programmes to make it easier for firms to acquire and manage PCs. Analyst firm Gartner...

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IBM has introduced three new PC leasing programmes to make it easier for firms to acquire and manage PCs. Analyst firm Gartner said the move could drive a trend towards users taking longer leases.

IBM Global Financing's PC Performance Plan will extend operating leases from the traditional 36-month term to up to 48 months.

IBM said the plan covers laptops, desktops, monitors, printers and peripherals from any supplier, and involves low monthly payments.

"With this extended term, IBM Global Financing is matching the financial life of the asset to its actual technology usage pattern. The practical economics of this option should eventually force IBM's competitors to follow suit," said Gartner research director Frances O'Brien.

The second option, PC Performance Plan Plus, has a lease-to-own option for IBM Thinkpad notebooks.

The third option is PC Price Per Seat, under which user organisations pay for each PC they use through a single monthly invoice. The service includes additional PC support and lifecycle services as part of a traditional PC lease.

O'Brien said the PC Price Per Seat plan is worth considering for IBM-only customers with 3,000 or more PCs, who want to shift the support burden to third parties.

Gartner said IBM's new leasing programmes offer businesses "flexibility and predictability" when acquiring and managing PCs. It added that IBM's move could rekindle flagging customer interest in leasing its PC hardware.

Last month Mike Norris, chief executive at IT services company Computacenter, predicted the price of PC equipment would fall substantially because of the weakness of the dollar against the pound. "There must be pent-up price declines and I would not be surprised to see significant drops - by as much as 10% across the board," he said.

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