Laptops fuel strong worldwide PC sales, says IDC

Growth rate far surpasses desktop increase; laptop share of PC market approaching 50%

Strong laptop sales are making this a hot holiday shopping season for PC makers, according to a report from IDC.

In its Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, IDC projects that worldwide PC shipments will increase by 16.7 per cent in the fourth quarter of this year, bolstered by the strong laptop sales. The growth projection is good news for manufacturers, who probably still vividly remember slogging through a slow second half of 2006. PC growth was merely 7.9 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2006.

This fourth quarter is expected to fuel 2007's overall growth rate of 14.6 per cent, up from 10.1 per cent in 2006, IDC reported.

"The peak portable growth seen in the third quarter will be difficult to sustain, but it reflects strong demand across regions and segments that will fuel growth going forward," said Loren Loverde, director of IDC's Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, in a statement. "It will be increasingly important for PC vendors to have a strong portable offering to stay competitive as the market continues its rapid shift to mobile computing."

In the third quarter, worldwide laptop shipments grew 37 per cent, a rate that even edged out several major quarters in 2003 and 2005, when growth hit 35 per cent or slightly more.

This move to laptops has taken a toll on worldwide desktop shipments. Global desktop volumes continue to increase, thanks mostly to sales in emerging countries, but that percentage is in the low single digits.

Overall, however, the growth differential between desktops and laptops has never been larger. IDC reported that in the third quarter, laptop sales growth was more than 33 percentage points over desktop growth. That differential has not been more than 30 per cent since 1996.

The laptop share of client PCs nearly hit 45 per cent in the third quarter and is expected to reach 50 per cent by the end of 2008, IDC added.

"The significant influences driving the growth of portable PC volume include falling prices, the narrowing performance gap as compared with desktops, improving wireless connectivity, and the expanded access through retail channels," said Richard Shim, personal computing research manager at IDC. "The desktop market will aim to maintain share by emphasizing improvements in energy efficiency, shrinking case designs and emerging mainstream opportunities, such as gaming and all-in-one systems."

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Sharon Gaudin

Computerworld
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?