Ireland beats Euro growth rates for PC shipments


24 Oct 2006

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Irish notebook PC shipment growth for the third quarter of this year was the highest in western Europe, siliconrepublic.com has learned.

According to preliminary data from IDC, notebook shipments for July, August and September rose by more than 30pc year on year. Both the consumer and commercial markets showed double-digit growth. The average PC growth rate for Europe, Middle East and Africa was just 11.2pc, IDC found. The percentage increase for notebooks in particular was 29pc.

Desktop PC shipments in Ireland showed a decline over the third quarter compared with the same period a year ago. In actual volume terms, there were more desktops than notebooks shipped in Q3 — 60pc versus 40pc. However, this is the starkest example yet of the shift towards mobile computing away from larger desktop machines, which has been evident for some time.

Q3 shipments were ahead slightly of Q2 shipments, IDC found. In total, 152,000 units were shipped in Ireland during the quarter.

“There was a strong demand for the notebook form factor with consumers and businesses,” confirmed Michael Larner, senior research analyst with IDC. “Wider screens have been introduced so you can view digital photos and take the laptop into the lounge. Enhancements on the screen itself in terms of clarity makes it more popular for viewing movies,” he added.

Larner described the desktop market as “sluggish” for the quarter, adding: “It’s evident in the corporate market that there’s a loyalty towards desktops because of the enhanced security; for example physically it’s very difficult to remove. However, the general trend in the consumer market and for client-facing employees such as field sales people or engineers is towards the notebook form factor.”

Dell remained the leading PC supplier in the Irish market, which Larner said was due in part to its perception as being local because it employs several thousand people in the State. “Dell is almost considered an Irish company and it holds a lot of loyalty in the Irish market,” he said.

By Gordon Smith