Rivals to Follow Apple's Lead and Cut Down on Model Numbers

Both Acer and Asus are going to take a leaf from Apple's book in stock management by slashing the number of stock keeping units, in a bid to reduce inventory risks caused by a more diverse portfolio.

According to Monica Chen and Joseph Tsai from Digitimes, both computer makers will take that drastic step in 2012 which will also help them cut down on costs by streamlining the development process.

The report says that Asus has more than 50 notebook and netbook projects in the pipeline compared to less than 10 for Apple. Asus is reportedly looking to reduce the number of Eee PC designs from more than ten to five as ultrabooks take centre stage.

It is also claimed that Acer is looking to reduce its number of notebook projects by a third next year. 2012 will see the introduction of Windows 8 for ARM which could help Taiwanese companies reduce their bills of material and improve profitability.

At least one manufacturer, Acer, has publicly said that it will gradually move away from the low cost market in order to improve its profit margins.

Apple has only two MacBook Air models and four MacBooks SKUs, although this boils down to four chassis (11.3-inch, 13-inch, 15-inch and 17-inch) and the US manufacturer is rumoured to be unifying its MacBook Air and MacBook range next year.