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Samsung overtakes Apple in notebook sales race

updated 06:55 pm EDT, Tue July 6, 2010

Samsung uses netbooks to edge Apple

Samsung rode the coattails of the netbook trend to pass not only Sony but Apple in notebook sales early this year, iSuppli found today. Its portable shipments shot up 14.9 percent in the first three months of the year to top 1.9 million, or just enough to pass Apple's 1.8 million MacBooks for seventh place and to clearly overtake Sony. The year-over-year growth easily soared past the industry, as Samsung nearly doubled its shipments from just 985,000 PCs in early 2009.

The Korean company was helped largely by its deals with European cellular carriers. Since many customers could get netbooks at a lower price or for free when mated with a 3G plan, Samsung earned a large number of near-automatic sales. Samsung also extended its US footprint much deeper than it had in the past, again owing to netbooks. About half of its entire shipments worldwide were netbooks, iSuppli said.

Among the top five, the picture was considerably bleaker as many saw either flat or declining sales. HP continued to hold the lead but lost a slight amount of share to hold 18.9 percent of the market. Despite its netbooks, Acer slipped faster and had just 17.5 percent. Dell was virtually unmoved at 11.5 percent, and Toshiba was the only one of the leaders to have a gain, moving up to 9.3 percent. ASUS' Eee PC netbooks couldn't stop it from falling to 8.3 percent.

How the companies might have fared in the spring wasn't discussed by the analysts, but recent looks at results may work against Samsung or others focusing on low-end notebooks. Early research from Morgan Stanley has suggested that the iPad is flattening notebook growth, at least in the US, as buyers opt for Apple's tablet instead. The American company doesn't currently subsidize the iPad for 3G providers but has been helped by fulfilling more than one role, as its slate not only replaces netbooks but e-readers as well.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Geoduck

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Yes but

    Will this continue?

    Most people I know (I understand, not necessarily a random sample) that have tried NetBooks have ended up replacing them with something with more power.

    This was pushed by one time deals with Cell Carriers.

    There may have been some push from the bad economy. People got something that was cheap and just barely good enough. With a bit of recovery many could upgrade.

    I want to see if this holds year over year.

  1. rjdude

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Volume Yes,

    But at what margins?

  1. shiggie

    Joined: Dec 1969


    wait, what?

    Samsung makes notebooks?

  1. lamewing

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Can't we have one day without naysayers speaking up? Okay, Samsung outperformed Apple. Kudos. Will it last? Who knows? It doesn't really matter, but could we not have folks find a way to add a negative comment to any article that doesn't put Apple on a pedestal?

  1. wrenchy

    Joined: Dec 1969




    It's the end of the netbook as we know it. It's the end I tell you. That's it. All those netbook makers are doomed. Doomed I tell you. iPad is here and it will take over the world. It's magical! It's revolutionary! I already know how to use it! Steve Jobs was right AGAIN.

    Is that right...

  1. ggirton

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I'm confused all the time now!

    Is this story about netbooks or notebooks?

    It should at least talk about which manufacturers
    report which product in which category and what the
    percentages are. Because of course it has to be about both.
    But actually -- it is about neither!

  1. CaptainHaddock

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I think both Apple and Sony would rather ship a single laptop than 5 el-cheapo netbooks.

  1. Foe Hammer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Dee-doody-doody-doo ...

    So Samsung shipped 100,000 more tiny cheap pieces of c*** than Apple shipped full-fledged notebooks. Outperformed? Hardly. Naysayer? So be it, Jedi.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: Not unitl

    On the flip side, any article that puts negative spin on Apple is pounced upon by the trolls as proof Apple is DOOMED.

    Seriously, when was the last time anyone on these boards said "Apple was Doomed!"?

    Or do you consider any comment that isn't "Oh, Apple, you're the greatest!" to be someone posting that Apple is Doomed?

  1. MacNNBTG

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Badly written

    This is a badly written piece. As stated before - is this about NETbooks or NOTEbooks. Apple doesn't make a NETbook.

    In an economic recession, it it obvious that people will "buy down" and get a cheaper computer. Apple's sales of the iPad don't fit NET or NOTE - it is a new category of which it is the only occupant (for now).

    Apple doesn't cater to the "toy" computer market, so these numbers are meaningless.

    Definition of "toy": Cheap imitation of some real object, usually made of plastic and breaks easily. Functionality is marginal.

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