Tue, Apr 03, 2007 - Page 12 News List

PC Home to offer 24-hour notebook computer delivery

By Jason Tan  /  STAFF REPORTER

With more consumers getting comfortable with online shopping, computer makers are now betting on the cyberspace mall to boost their product sales.

"The shopping behavior of local consumers has changed over the years. As Internet portals begin to offer enhanced security, we are seeing more buyers making online purchases," said Scott Lin (林顯郎), Acer Inc president for Taiwan operations.

Lin made the remarks yesterday at a press conference, where PC Home Online Inc (網路家庭), one of the nation's leading portals, announced a tie-up with major computer brands to guarantee 24-hour delivery on notebook computer orders.

When PC Home started offering e-commerce activities, including online shopping, in 2000, Acer -- the second-largest notebook computer brand in Taiwan -- was not convinced it was a viable channel as the market was still under developed with issues such as money scams and personal information theft looming in the background.

"But now all computer brand makers are fully supporting the booming online shopping trend," Lin said.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) Taiwan Ltd echoed his views.

"Our computer sales generated by the online channel are estimated to grow as much as 20 percent this year compared to last year," said Benjamin Ou (歐明哲), a senior product marketing manager at HP Taiwan.

Internet users are embracing the experience of online shopping since better transaction security mechanisms were put in place, he said.

It has therefore become a very important channel to computer makers, in addition to the conventional bricks-and-mortar shops around the country, he added.

The Taipei-based research firm Market Intelligence Center (資訊市場情報中心) said that the online shopping market in Taiwan is set to grow to NT$143.8 billion (US$4.4 billion) this year, with the online auction market set to hit NT$79.4 billion.

That is a strong growth rate when compared with the NT$93.5 billion worth of online shopping and NT$51.7 billion through Internet auction sites last year, it said.

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