Q. We currently are working with PCs which are10 years old: they take 15 minutes to start; have trouble connecting to the internet and shut down unexpectedly losing your work. I’m told there is no budget available to replace them but surely it would pay by recovering lost time?

defend-against-malwareA. Around five and a half days of Brits’ time every year is spent waiting for slow computers, according to a recent study. A worldwide survey of 8,000 people, conducted by SanDisk, found that the average PC user in the UK has lost 130 hours in the last 12 months due to delays caused by slow computers. Due to the economic downturn business has not renewed investment in IT and it has even been suggested as a factor in the productivity gap. Often the perception is that this is going to cost the same as it did back then, but the reality is that the cost has plummeted and the competitive advantage is even greater.

Incidentally, over a quarter (27 per cent) of the American users questioned said that PC delays had been so bad that they had lost sleep, with around the same around saying that PC-related frustration had put them in a bad mood for that day. Over half (53 per cent) blamed computers at work or home, with only 22 per cent frustrated by their mobile phone.

File transfers also took up a large amount of people’s time, with over two days of Americans’ time spent waiting for the actions.

While almost a quarter (23 per cent) of Germans were likely to throw misbehaving devices at a wall or stamp on them in anger, American and Chinese users were the most calm to react, with only 14 per cent of users in those countries doing likewise.