Taipei, Thursday, July 31, 2014 02:26 (GMT+8)
mostly cloudy
Taipei
29°C
ECS shipping EZ-Buddie 2 SFF PC in volume
Michael McManus, DigiTimes.com, Taipei [Monday 14 February 2005]

After some fits and starts, Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS) is back on track and shipping its EZ-Buddie 2 small-form-factor (SFF) PC in volume, according to sources at the company.

ECS began shipping the EZ-Buddie 2 in September 2004, and shipped about 5,000 units the first month. However, beginning in October, the company faced a shortage of the modules used in the unit’s front-panel system status display. According to the sources, ECS was forced to discontinue shipments of the SFF PC for two months, and by the time shipments resumed in December, the company had missed the key Christmas season and lost some customers to its competitors.

However, despite shipping only 2,000 units in December, the company is now ready to ship the systems in volume, and ECS is confident it will be able to quickly increase its monthly shipments to about 10,000 units, the sources added.

The EZ-Buddie 2 is a variation on the SFF PC theme. ECS took a cube-shaped SFF PC and attached two large speakers to the sides, giving the product the appearance of a portable stereo system. The system, which ECS calls a personal entertainment computer (PEC), also includes an alarm clock, remote control and instant-on Linux-based DVD player and FM radio, all of which add to the consumer electronics (CE) feel of the product. ECS has also made it easy for non-enthusiasts to maximize the performance of the system by including a rotary dial on the front panel for overclocking the CPU.

Since the product targets mainstream consumers and students, ECS does not focus its sales in the barebones channel, as other SFF PC vendors do. Instead, the company tends to work with local systems integrators (SIs), and is currently cooperating with small SIs in Japan, US and Europe, the sources explained. In addition, ECS may look to partner with more chain stores to grow its SFF PC business, much as it has done with its notebook business, where it partners with Wal-Mart, Fry’s and Dixons, the sources added.

The display module shortage highlights one of the difficulties SFF PC vendors face as they begin offering more complex system designs: the management of an expanded supply chain. Sources from another SFF PC vendor, while denying that it also faced a shortage of display modules in the fourth quarter of last year, did admit that its module supply is difficult to control, as the lead-time is about 4-6 weeks. Another SFF PC vendor, Micro-Star International (MSI), recently exhibited a simplified version of its Mega PC, which did not include its usual front-panel display module.

Another challenge SFF PC vendors face is transitioning from one generation of product to the next. Through the first eight months of 2004, ECS had monthly shipments of 15,000-20,000 units of its EZ-Buddie 1 PC, but the company phased out production of the system in the fourth quarter and decided to focus on the EZ-Buddie 2 instead, the sources explained.

For its non-SFF PC business, ECS had average monthly shipments of about 30,000 barebones units in 2004, the sources indicated. The company plans to increase those shipments to about 60,000 per month this year, the sources added.

ECS EZ-Buddie 2

Feature

Specification

Dimensions (HxWxD)

220 x 180 x 320mm

Form factor

SFF (proprietary)

Processor support

Intel Pentium 4

Core logic

Intel 865G

Video

Integrated

Instant-on features

DVD, VCD, audio CD, FM radio

LCD display module

Hardware diagnostics and alarm

System/CPU temperature

Multimedia (EZ Cinema) indicators

FM Radio/Clock

Remote control

Yes

Speakers

10W (5W + 5W, RMS)

20Hz~20KHz

Source: company, compiled by DigiTimes, February 2005.

ECS EZ-Buddie 2 SFF PC
Photo: Company

Realtime news
  • Digitimes Research: China sees increased smartphone AP shipments in 2Q14

    Bits + chips | 4h 22min ago

  • Taiwan market: FET aims at 95% 4G coverage at end of 2014

    Mobile + telecom | 4h 24min ago

  • ASE posts EPS of NT$0.64 for 2Q14

    Bits + chips | 4h 29min ago

  • China polysilicon maker LDK Solar to resume production

    Before Going to Press | 4h 53min ago

  • Digitimes Research: Taiwan ships 351 million small-to-medium-size panels in 2Q14

    Before Going to Press | 4h 54min ago

  • UMC reports EPS NT$0.28 for 2Q14

    Before Going to Press | 4h 55min ago

  • Digitimes Research: Xiaomi continues to rank as number one smartphone vendor in China in 2Q14

    Before Going to Press | 4h 55min ago

  • InFocus looking to become top-3 smartphone vendor in Taiwan

    Before Going to Press | 5h 45min ago

  • ASE to ramp up SiP packaging revenues in 2014

    Before Going to Press | 5h 50min ago

  • Vendors cutting notebook shipments to Latin America

    Before Going to Press | 5h 52min ago

  • Innolux to decrease reliance on China market

    Before Going to Press | 6h 18min ago

  • Wah Lee 3Q14 revenues to move higher

    Before Going to Press | 6h 19min ago

  • Growth in global panel demand to exceed growth in supply, says AUO

    Before Going to Press | 6h 19min ago

  • Intel to see difficulties shipping 40 million tablet CPUs in 2014

    Before Going to Press | 6h 20min ago

  • AUO expects 3Q14 small- to medium-size panel shipments to rise 5-8% sequentially

    Before Going to Press | 6h 21min ago

  • MediaTek 3Q14 revenues to grow 6-11% on quarter

    Before Going to Press | 6h 22min ago

  • Taiwan market: Everlight Electronics expected to ship 2.6 million LED light bulbs in 2014

    Before Going to Press | 6h 23min ago

  • AUO 2Q14 net profit hits 4-year high

    Before Going to Press | 6h 24min ago

  • China market: LCD TV sales in 1H14 down on year, says China Market Monitor

    Before Going to Press | 6h 25min ago

Pause
 | 
View more
MSI Global N750Ti TF 2GD5/OC
2014 global mobile application processor market forecast
  • 2014 global high brightness LED market, trends and shipment forecast

    For the global LED lighting market, the market size will reach US$25.82 billion in 2014 or a market penetration rate of 23.4%. This is attributable to exponential shipment growth for light bulbs, tubes, and directional lamps.

  • Greater China touch panel shipment forecast through 2015

    This Special Report provides forecasts through 2015 for Greater China touch panel shipments with breakdowns based on technology (glass, film, resistive), application (smartphone, NB and tablet) and by firm.

  • 2014 global tablet demand forecast

    This report analyzes the main players, their strategies and shipments forecasts for 2014, as well as other factors contributing to either growth or decline in various segments within the tablet market, with a particular focus on Apple, Google, Samsung, and Microsoft, along with whitebox vendors.