Windows 8, Ultrabooks Could Lift PC Market

The worldwide PC market is slumping, in need of back-to-school sales and new Ultrabooks and tablets running Windows 8, according to IDC. Recent earnings announcements have suggested as much.

The worldwide PC market is expected to grow only by a fraction of a percentage in 2012, IDC reported Aug. 23, due to economic conditions and wait-and-see attitudes. This will mark the PC market's second consecutive year of growth below 2 percent.

By year's end, IDC expects PC sakes totals to creep to 367.2 million, up from the 363.9 million that closed out 2011. Between 2013 and 2016, the market is now expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.1 percent, down from the previously forecast 8.4 percent.

This year, help should come, in part, from the release of Microsoft's Windows 8, which will remove the barrier for the release of a trove of Ultrabooks and tablets running the new OS, which will debut Oct. 24.

This year, the firm expects a negative growth rate for both desktops and portable PCs in mature markets. in emerging markets, portable PCs will be the highlight, with a 6 percent growth rate. But, next year, again, things will look up, with high points being a growth rate of 12.5 percent for mobile PCs in emerging markets and 9.9 percent worldwide.

In July, Gartner reported that 87.5 million PCs shipped during the Q2 2012, led by Hewlett-Packard, whose shipments fell by 12.1 percent from a year ago; Lenovo, up nearly 15 percent; and Acer, which with modest 3.6 percent growth managed to push Dell to the No. 4 spot.

This article was originally published on 08-27-2012
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