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Netbook growth won’t offset record PC decline

March 2, 2009 at 4:11 pm


The impact of the credit crunch is likely to see PC shipments falling more sharply in 2009 than in any year since its invention. This is according to the research firm, Gartner, who said that PC sales will total 257 million units this year, a fall of 11.9% over 2008. On the positive side, Gartner said that part of this decline was due to ‘longer PC lifetimes’, which is good news for the consumer.

PC shipments down

However, it does expect that mobile PCs will rise by 9% to 155.6 million units in 2009. Most of this mobile PC growth is expected to come from netbooks, contributing 8% of total shipments. Gartner research director Angela McIntyre, said that “For the most part, users are moving toward systems with larger screens and greater capabilities; systems with 8.9in screens were the standard in the second half of 2008.”

“Naturally, systems with larger screens and greater capabilities cost more but prices in general continue to fall. In late 2008, the average price in the US for a mini-notebook with an 8.9in screen, Microsoft Windows XP and a 160 GB hard drive was around $450 (£317). We expect the average price of the same machine to drop to $399 by the end of this year.”

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