Demand for low-cost and portable PCs will continue to drive double-digit growth in 2006, according to market watcher IDC.
Due to strong growth of more than 17 per cent in the third quarter 2005, expectations for Q4 have been bumped up to 15 per cent. This has raised overall growth in 2005 to 15.8 per cent. Even though PC sales will decrease in 2006, the strong 2005 performance has prompted IDC to revise its 2006 forecast to 10.5 per cent, growth up from 9.1 per cent.
Loren Loverde, director of IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, said: “Following the shocks of 2001 and 2002 many people were impressed with the strength of the market in 2004 but cautious about the foundation and longevity of this growth.
“The fact that solid double-digit growth has continued through 2005 shows that the market recovery did not peak in 2004 as many expected, but is still ongoing.”
John Turner, business manager at distributor Midwich, said: “The majority of our vendor sales are notebooks. Toshiba has pulled out of the desktop and server space, Samsung only does notebooks and 70 per cent of the Acer stock we sell are notebooks.”
The updated figures make 2006 the fourth consecutive year of double-digit shipment growth. However, growth in Western Europe is expected to slow this year. Strong demand so far has been attributed to robust growth in consumer portables, supported by persistent gains in the business segments. However, IDC has claimed 2006 will be quieter due to a weaker euro versus dollar, lower GDP predictions and an anticipated decline in PC replacements.
Shaune Parsons, managing director of VAR Computer World Wales, said: “We think we will have a good year owing to contract deals for PC refreshment, but we are not so sure about new contracts. The big PC vendors are being aggressive, but the exchange rate is hurting them and strong PC VARs will continue to snap-up the struggling ones.”
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