Wed, Dec 07, 2005 - Page 10 News List

Third-quarter sales of PC monitors jump by 25 percent

By Lisa Wang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Sales of computer monitors in Taiwan expanded at a faster-than-expected 25 percent pace during the third quarter, largely because of strong back-to-school demand and replacement demand from government agencies, market researcher International Data Corp (IDC) said yesterday.

But for the full year, sales of computer monitors will only rise by 4.5 percent from last year, IDC projected without giving specific figures.

State purchases

"Huge back-to-school demand [and] purchases by state-run Central Trust of China (中信局) have boosted sales," IDC analyst Stacy Wu (吳惠筠) said in a quarterly report released yesterday.

Central Trust -- whose business operations include banking, insurance, trade and warehousing -- is in charge of purchasing computers and other goods for government agencies and schools.

Strong demand for liquid-crystal-display (LCD) monitors was the main reason for the increase, Wu said.

"Consumers and retailers snapped up LCD monitors in the late third quarter, [rather than in the fourth quarter as in previous years], in anticipation of further price hikes," Wu said.

Consumers purchased LCD monitors and retailers began building up inventory after LCD monitor prices stabilized in the third quarter, after a quarter-long rise in prices, Wu said.

As a result, sales of computer monitors jumped by around 25 percent to 610,020 units from the second quarter, which was 20 percent faster than IDC's previous forecast, the researcher said.

Compared with the previous year, however, the expansion was merely 3.8 percent, as the rising adoption of laptop computers limited growth in desktop computers, she added.

Sales of branded LCD monitors increased to 489,539 units in the last quarter, making up 95 percent of total sales, compared with 92 percent in the second quarter, IDC said. The figure did not include LCD monitors sold bundled with computers, it added.

Meanwhile, sales of the boxy cathode-ray-tube monitors amounted to only 25,000 units, according to IDC.

Slower Q4

Looking ahead, as consumers and retailers purchased LCD monitors in the previous quarter, combined sales of computer monitors would decrease slightly in the current quarter compared with the third quarter, Wu said.

Seventeen-inch monitors remained the mainstay LCD monitor, accounting for 58 percent of all LCD monitors sold in the third quarter, IDC said.

But, sales of 19-inch monitors grew quickly due to falling prices, and made up more than a third of total sales, the researcher said, adding that price hikes in the past quarter were mainly for 15-inch and 17-inch models.

The top four brands in the domestic LCD monitor market are Chi Mei Corp (奇美實業), which sells computer monitors under the CMV and PolyView brands, ViewSonic International Corp (優派), Acer Inc and BenQ Corp (明基), according to IDC.

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