JT Wang, the chairman of tech powerhouse Acer, has announced that the company will be evaluating its product lines in 2012, and will cut their numbers with a view to reducing the porfolio size by two thirds by 2015.
According to Aaron Lee and Joseph Tsai from Digitimes, the so-called simplification plans will not affect its ODM partners (like Quanta Computer, Wistron and Pegatron), as management efficiencies across the upstream supply chain are likely to outweigh any related order reduction, with sales expected to rise on average by 10 per cent a year.
Acer's decision to cut down on the number of product lines could be a deliberate attempt by the company to follow in the footsteps of Apple.
The US company has only a few stock keeping units. This reduces the bill of materials & the total cost of ownership, cuts down on time to market & related R&D costs and reduces customer confusion.
Expect other companies to follow apple's successful minimalist approach to product lineups. For example, Apple has one tablet design, only three different phones and five different laptop designs, which hasn't prevented it from outflanking all its competitors.