PC Sales Poised For Double-Digit Growth


Growth dipped below the double digit mark to 9.8 percent to a total of 52 million units shipped in Q2, the market research firm said. Slower sales in Western Europe and Japan were cited as the chief reason for the slight slowing of sales in the second quarter.

Even with the release of Microsoft's Vista operating system looming, Bob O'Donnell, IDC's vice presidents of clients and displays, predicts sales will remain relatively stable. "Operating systems are not driving PC sales so much anymore," he said. "It don't think consumers will wait for Vista. Also, I expect coupons" will be available that can be traded in for Vista by consumers who buy before the OS is released. Microsoft has said it plans to release Vista in January.

O'Donnell expects consumer buying to be the main driver of PC sales in the near coming months and he noted that consumers don't have much of an OS choice " they get the operating system that comes with the PC they purchase.

"We believe consumer notebooks will continue to drive strong overall PC sales through the rest of this year despite the presence of many potential competitors for discretionary income this holiday season, such as flat-panel TVs," he said. "Looking forward, we expect desktop shipments will begin to stabilize, particularly in the enterprise segment. However, consumer notebook adoption will fuel industry growth and move us closer to the day when notebooks will out-ship desktop PCs."

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The market research firm expects PC growth in the U.S. to gradually increase to 2008 with enterprise shipments in particular to lead the growth. "We don't expect to see Vista impact enterprise growth in the near term," he said, noting that large IT shops tend to take longer to adopt operating systems. "I expect to see enterprise growth at the end of the decade," he said.

IDC is predicting enterprise growth of 12.1 percent in 2008 in the U.S. compared to 9.1 percent among consumers next year.

Regionally, IDC found that developing nations are beginning to make their mark in PC purchases.

"Developing regions are not only growing faster, but exceeding expectations," said Loren Loverde, director of IDC's Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, in a statement. "Although this is an important development trend, it's also the case that the bulk of portable PC adoption " the leading market drier " remains concentrated in the more mature markets."