Average selling price of laptop computers drops

18 Jul 2008

The role of the PC within the personal technology space is as important as it ever was, and leading tech industry analysts report the sector grew by between 15pc and 16pc during the second quarter.

Reports from both IDC and Gartner rank HP as the world’s largest PC manufacturer, followed by Dell, Acer, Lenovo and Toshiba.

While Gartner reported a 16pc increase year-on-year, IDC said the PC industry grew 15.3pc on last year.

Gartner believes economic shocks have eaten into the average selling price of computers.

“Mobile PCs continued to lead unit growth across all regions as the average selling price (ASP) of mobile PCs declined sharply relative to desk-based PC ASPs,” said Mika Kitagawa, principal analyst for Gartner’s Client Computing Markets group.

“Economic uncertainties have hit PC revenues, resulting in steep ASP declines, especially in markets such as the US and the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region. The industry could ultimately see a significant wave of consolidation if stronger vendors continue to press their pricing advantage.”

But, according to IDC, despite the economic doldrums the PC industry has stood firm.

“Despite the economic headwinds, the PC market continued to show its resilience,” said Loren Loverde, director of IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker.

“Product refreshes, vendor competition for channels and aggressive pricing add to the ongoing trend toward portable computing in attracting buyers. The steady growth, despite the pressure on consumer finances, reflects the increasingly important role of PCs within personal technology, and steady improvements in price and design.

“Nevertheless, economic pressures are mounting and PC market growth is expected to decline over the next year. The relatively strong PC market in recent quarters does not mean the sector is immune to the changing economic environment,” Loverde said.

During the quarter, HP shipped over 13.3 million computers and held an 18pc share of the global market, followed by Dell which shipped over 11 million computers and held a 15.6pc marketshare. This was followed by Acer which shipped 6.7 million computers, Lenovo which shipped 5.5 million computers and Toshiba which shipped 3.1 million units.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years