The right to Rome
This summer saw the growth in portable PC sales continue. In August the proportion of portable units sold out of the total PC market increased by five points compared with the year before. Much of the growth was down to the success of the consumer market, however, as lower prices stimulated sales, according to market watcher Context Research.
Out of the top seven European countries (Germany, UK, France, Italy, Spain, Sweden and the Netherlands), Italy showed the most enthusiasm for mobile PCs, with 59 per cent of PCs sold belonging to that category. Sales in France were behind those of its neighbours - just 37 per cent of the total.
Happy and you know it with HP
Hewlett-Packard (HP) will be pleased to see its channel gave it an apparent vote of confidence in a Context Channel Facts survey held across Europe. HP took the top slot in the research, where resellers were asked which of the vendors whose products they sold was the easiest to deal with. However, this result was much as expected, as over 70 per cent of respondents said they dealt in HP kit.
Second in the league of top vendors was Acer, whose equipment was sold by over half of the companies polled. The results were fairly consistent across all the nations involved, except in Germany, where Fujitsu Siemens Computers came a close second behind HP.
Optimism abounds after summer slump
Channel optimism bounced back last month after August's holiday slowdown Context Channel Facts shows. Almost 17 per cent growth was forecast in September for October, compared with 14.4 per cent expected in August for September.
Storage, networking and mobility were the areas resellers were most optimistic about in both surveys, but sales of desktops, servers and hand-helds were also expected to grow. Looking abroad, German resellers were the least happy out of the main European economies, forecasting overall growth in October of just 10 per cent.
Adding a splash of colour
Channel sales of laser printers in the top four European economies (UK, France, Germany and Italy) grew by two per cent in unit terms during August compared with the same period last year, according to Context. However, revenues fell by four per cent, mainly due to a sharp drop in colour laser pricing year on year.
As a result, reseller margins are being squeezed, with prices dropping as vendors push the technology. In the process colour lasers are becoming more of a commodity.
An analysis of average selling prices showed that while average monochrome laser pricing kept steady (£441 in August against £449 a year ago), average prices of colour lasers have declined by 40 per cent year on year (£877 in August 2004 against £1,455 a year ago).
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