updated 10:30 am EDT, Fri March 14, 2008
PC Shipments to Top 300m
Computer shipments will still crest above 300 million in 2008 despite an economic slump triggered by the American housing market, according to a new study by IDC. The growth in notebooks is predicted to drive roughly 12.8 percent growth over the course of the year to reach roughly 302 million; of those, just over 45 percent (136.3 million) will account for portables, the research group says. Most of this comes from users either switching to a notebook or buying a computer for the first time because of the form factor and reduced prices, both of which render them more useful to newcomers than desktops.
"Consumers are increasingly seeing notebooks as essential personal communication and information gathering tools," says IDC Clients and Displays VP Bob O'Donnell.
While notebooks are understood to be ready for a healthy 26.2 percent increase over their results in 2007, desktops are estiamted to be virtually flat at 3.8 percent and will continue to drop over the next few years. The momentum shift will reportedly be enough to see notebooks outnumber desktops for the first time by 2010.
In addition to budget mainstream portables, the mobile category has been helped by the introduction of micro notebooks such as the ASUS Eee PC and the Everex CloudBook, many of which are extremely small but are often priced at $400 or less. At the high end, desktop replacements are expected to replace some desktops and this week saw Acer release the first-ever 18.4-inch widescreen notebook designed to replace both a mid-range desktop and an HDTV at the same time.