The New York Times > Technology > Contemplating a PC Market Without I.B.M.: "Inside Hewlett-Packard, the world's second-largest personal computer maker, executives greeted the news on Friday that I.B.M., the world's No. 3 PC maker, might be retreating from the market, with good cheer.
Executives at Dell Computer, the largest personal computer maker, would not comment, but some industry analysts speculated that they too were smiling about I.B.M.'s decision.
Still, many in the industry were concerned that an I.B.M. withdrawal could accelerate competition in an industry where prices were already falling."
Lots of speculation about this possibility, but in reality I believe all of IBM's consumer-centric PCs (including many Thinkpad models) were already outsourced; I'm not it'd be a huge difference, in the grand scheme of things, but it would certainly be a PC industry milestone.