IT hardware sales in the corporate market are being dwarfed by demand from technology-hungry consumers, according to the latest figures by GfK.
The IT hardware market grew by 11 per cent in the first half of 2007, according to the analyst’s IT Barometer report, mainly driven by demand for Smart phones, storage devices, mobile PCs and mini-speakers.
GfK has based its latest report on sales figures from both the retail and corporate channels, including mail-order firms and e-tailers, over the past six months.
GfK claimed that 68 per cent of all notebooks sold went to consumer customers and 82 per cent of those sales were pre-installed with Microsoft Vista or with Vista-compatible notebooks.
On the downside, declining sectors included monitors, which fell seven per cent, printers, which dropped 15.5 per cent, and multi-disk drives, which plummeted 26 per cent.
Philipp Wagner, IT account director at GfK, told CRN: “In the consumer market, retailers are more able to encourage people to buy off the shelf. There is room for growth in the corporate side of the market, which tends to be more cautious than the consumers over new technology.
“We have had a splendid IT environment over the past 12 months. In the next half-year we are expecting moderate levels of growth, rather than double-digit growth.”
Andy Dow, commercial director at distributor Westcoast, said: “Mobile is outstripping the desktop, which although strong in a call-centre environment, cannot compete. Vista is being taken up more by consumers because they do not have the same compatibility issues as corporate customers. However, all businesses will be based on Vista within 18-months.
“The consumer market is flying, whereas the corporate market is slow. SMEs are behaving more like consumers because they tend to have more flexibility over decisions.”
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