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Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Microsoft Surface Pro lineup in 2019

Microsoft to take coronavirus hit, cancels GDC visit

It’s not just phones that are seeing delays from the coronavirus, as PC manufacturer Microsoft signals a hit to delivery, among other things.

The mobile world is being shaken a bit by the coronavirus, and it’s not the only part of consumer technology to signal concerns, with computers next.

While the rumours suggest Apple’s next devices could eventually be delayed due to parts production and a slower than normal coronavirus-affected production cycle — despite an updated iPad Pro expected in the next month or so — Microsoft could be affected as well, and has updated its financial year earnings guidance accordingly.

The company suggested this week that while it sees “strong Windows demand” in line with expectations, “the supply chain is returning to normal at a slower pace than anticipated”, which means the hardware may be coming a little more slowly than initially expected.

Microsoft has already suggested its third quarter of the 2020 fiscal year probably won’t meet its guidance as expected, “as Windows OEM and Surface are more negatively impacted than previously anticipated”.

That’s potentially bad news if Microsoft runs out of Surface computers in store, and may mean it will take a little longer to see new models and stock arrive, however it’s not the only place where Microsoft has noted an issue with the coronavirus.

At the upcoming Game Developers Conference (GDC) in San Francisco from March 16, Microsoft will not have a physical presence, and has withdrawn from GDC 2020, alongside a few other companies, including EA, Facebook, and Sony.

It’s worth noting that it doesn’t mean Microsoft’s gaming devices are delayed, at least not yet, but that it won’t be travelling to some of the bigger industry events, and it’s possible we’ll see the same sort of situation that occurred with Mobile World Congress happen with the Game Developers Conference, and depending on what happens, maybe even E3 later on, as well.

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