Thu, Sep 22, 2005 - Page 11 News List

Asian PC sales to rise 15 percent

FORECAST Research firm IDC said that the increase this year will be followed by a 12.2 percent jump next year, as consumers snap up low-priced laptops

AFP , SINGAPORE

Computer sales in the Asia-Pacific excluding Japan are tipped to rise by almost 15 percent to 40.03 million this year, led by strong demand for notebooks as prices tumble, an industry report said yesterday.

Growth is expected to continue next year with a projected increase of 12.2 percent to nearly 45 million units, research firm International Data Corp (IDC) said.

"Notebooks were on fire this past quarter with the spread of low prices and increased awareness in mature and developing countries alike," said Bryan Ma, IDC's regional associate director of personal systems research.

According to IDC, sales of notebook computers this year are expected to increase 35.7 percent, compared with 10.2 percent for desktop computers.

Personal computer (PC) demand will be strongest in the emerging markets of China and India, with other South Asian countries expected to offer significant growth prospects.

"The PC markets in Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, though small at the moment, represent burgeoning opportunities in the region, particularly in the business and public sectors," said Andrew Wong, IDC's research manager.

"All of these markets are highly fragmented with a few strong local vendors and a large assembler/whitebox market ... This represents an opportune time for multinational vendors to respond competitively ... to try to achieve increased penetration in these markets."

China will remain biggest market, with almost 48 percent of the region's sales this year expected to come from the Asian economic powerhouse, IDC said.

Its neighbor India, the second largest PC market in Asia, is expected to clock the fastest sales growth rate of 30.1 percent this year and 25.6 percent next year on the back of buoyant economic growth, IDC said.

For mature markets like Hong Kong and South Korea, computer sales growth rates are expected to be modest, IDC said, without giving specific figures.

As for computer servers, sales in the region excluding Japan rose 13 percent to US$2.97 billion in the January-June period, boosted by strong demand from China, another research house said.

For the three months to June, regional server sales were up almost 16 percent from a year earlier to US$1.6 billion, Gartner said in a report released late Tuesday.

Sales in China rose 22.1 percent to US$601 million in the June quarter, on robust demand from the country's telecommunications, government and education sectors, Gartner said.

China was ranked the biggest server market, accounting for almost 38 percent of the region's sales in the second quarter, followed by South Korea at 15 percent and Australia at 14.4 percent.

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