Skip to main content

On the market for assembled desktops, laptops and phones.

I am currently on my third laptop in 8 years. The one I have currently is pretty powerful but the last two weren't as powerful as I wished. They didn't have a dedicated GPU. They didn't have SSDs. Their CPUs were a generation old. Don't get me wrong, they were still very helpful, especially given that most of my time was spent programming and running long-running simulations. But, I would've loved to be able to swap out the CPU or the SSD on my old laptop, instead of having to throw it away and buy a new one.

If I had a desktop, instead of a laptop, throwing the old out and replacing them with the new might have been easier. There are a number of people who still prefer assembling their desktop from scratch. And there are businesses that cater specifically to these customers. The good thing about assembling your own desktop, as I mentioned earlier, is the fact that you can swap out the old CPU/GPU with the new ones and replace the existing magnetic hard drive with a flashy SSD. But, they are obviously not portable. Having two desktops, one at work and another at home, is a little costly. There are ways to sync the two but it'll take a little bit of effort. And, you wont be able to work when you're traveling. Let me not talk about the merits of using a laptop/desktop, all of us have our own opinions.

Coming to the point, I wanted to see how easy it was to assemble my own desktop. So, I searched for such services on Google (the specific phrase being "make your own desktop service india") and I came across this answer (, from April 2016, stating that there weren't any services in India where you could assemble your own PC and have it delivered. Which seems to be mostly true. There are a few international services which allow you to build your own PC but none Indian. looks the cleanest of them all but it doesn't assemble desktops for you and it needs you to order the items from Flipkart/Amazon/other by yourself. And assemble the desktop yourself. is overkill. It's not based in India but they ship here nevertheless. But their selection/customization/build process seems like overkill. Which is the same story with And

The clunkiest of them all, but the only one based in India, seems to be, where I had to select and move individual items into the Cart.

A few of the above mentioned businesses also provide assembled laptops but again, they're not based in India. And getting replacement parts or trying to upgrade the laptop with the latest CPU/GPU/others is going to take time and a lot of money.

I don't understand why though. I don't understand why the creation part of customization has to be as clunky as the above websites made it out to be. And I don't understand why there aren't businesses catering to assembled laptops. While a few laptop manufacturers, like Dell, allow you to upgrade hardware, it comes at a hefty price.

Coming to phones that can be assembled and upgraded on the fly, Project Ara ( might come to mind. But it might not see the light of day anytime soon. I think there's a huge need for upgradable phones, especially in developing countries. It's quite common for people in developing countries to do one of two things - buy a good phone and live with it for half-a-decade or more or buy a cheap phone with good specs and replace it within an year. Phones that can be upgraded will find some middle ground here.

There's another interesting observation here. For the most part, Apple's products have one major flaw, they are built well and built to last. This might be good for the consumer but bad for the company. This, I expect, is one of the reasons why Apple has an iPhone upgrade program ( - because they want to keep selling new versions of the same product and make more money every year. A company which makes phones that can be assembled and upgraded easily will face a similar problem - they can't have a diverse product line, maybe 3 product categories at the most and their source of revenue will have to be from the components that make up the phones instead of the phones themselves.

Maybe one weekend, I will make a website that will be the smoothest way to assemble a desktop. And maybe a(n) (Indian) phone company will come up with a radical new design that will have upgradability as it's central driving factor. Or maybe I'll be able to.

Or, maybe such a service exists and I just haven't found it. If you know of any such services, that assemble laptops or desktops, do tell me. Until then ...

Popular posts from this blog

Animation using GNUPlot

Animation using GNUPlotI've been trying to create an animation depicting a quasar spectrum moving across the 5 SDSS pass bands with respect to redshift. It is important to visualise what emission lines are moving in and out of bands to be able to understand the color-redshift plots and the changes in it.
I've tried doing this using the animate function in matplotlib, python but i wasn't able to make it work - meaning i worked on it for a couple of days and then i gave up, not having found solutions for my problems on the internet.
And then i came across this site, where the gunn-peterson trough and the lyman alpha forest have been depicted - in a beautiful manner. And this got me interested in using js and d3 to do the animations and make it dynamic - using sliders etc.
In the meanwhile, i thought i'd look up and see if there was a way to create animations in gnuplot and whoopdedoo, what do i find but nirvana!

In the image, you see 5 static curves and one dynam…

on MOOCs.

For those of you who don't know, MOOC stands for Massively Open Online Course.

The internet is an awesome thing. It's making education free for all. Well, mostly free. But it's surprising at the width and depth of courses being offered online. And it looks like they are also having an impact on students, especially those from universities that are not top ranked. Students in all parts of the world can now get a first class education experience, thanks to courses offered by Stanford, MIT, Caltech, etc.

I'm talking about MOOCs because one of my new year resolutions is to take online courses, atleast 2 per semester (6 months). And I've chosen the following two courses on edX - Analyzing Big Data with Microsoft R Server and Data Science Essentials for now. I looked at courses on Coursera but I couldn't find any which was worthy and free. There are a lot more MOOC providers out there but let's start here. And I feel like the two courses are relevant to where I …

Pandas download statistics, PyPI and Google BigQuery - Daily downloads and downloads by latest version

Inspired by this blog post :, I wanted to play around with Google BigQuery myself. And the blog post is pretty awesome because it has sample queries. I mix and matched the examples mentioned on the blog post, intent on answering two questions - 
1. How many people download the Pandas library on a daily basis? Actually, if you think about it, it's more of a question of how many times was the pandas library downloaded in a single day, because the same person could've downloaded multiple times. Or a bot could've.
This was just a fun first query/question.
2. What is the adoption rate of different versions of the Pandas library? You might have come across similar graphs which show the adoption rate of various versions of Windows.
Answering this question is actually important because the developers should have an idea of what the most popular versions are, see whether or not users are adopting new features/changes they provide…