Shipments of personal computers are on the rise once again and should see sustained growth over the next few years, according to IDC's latest "Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker" released Monday.
Following a down first half in 2009, global shipments of PCs came alive in the second half, helping to eke out annual growth of 2.9 percent and putting the segment back in the black. Gains were due largely to shipments of portable computers, which rose 18.4 percent in 2009 over 2008. On the consumer end, purchases of notebooks jumped 38.5 percent for the year.
"PC volume continued to grow in 2009--fairing much better than in 2001, when a smaller recession produced a decline in PC volume," said IDC research analyst Jay Chou. "The positive 2009 results reflect lower prices and the fact that PCs are increasingly a must-have product."
The commercial and business PC market remained sluggish throughout last year but showed a slight recovery in the fourth quarter with growth of just under 1 percent. The much-vaunted Netbook finally showed some kinks in its armor as its growth slowed in the final quarter while other notebook categories rose 22 percent, said IDC.
For 2010, PC shipments are expected to grow 12.6 percent. Emerging markets have already done their fair share to stimulate the market and are likely to contribute growth of 18.5 percent this year. More mature markets will add growth of 7.2 percent this year, with double-digit gains following in 2011.
Portable PCs will remain the key driver of growth in both the consumer and business markets, grabbing a 70 percent share of all personal computers shipped by 2012, noted IDC. Desktop PC shipments will continue to fall across the world except in the Asia/Pacific region (excluding Japan), helping to keep them in slightly positive territory over the next few years.
PC sales are another story.… Read more