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IDC: Windows 8, Ultrabooks Will Push 2012 PC Sales

By - Source: IDC | B 8 comments

The PC sector will only see 5-percent growth compared to 2011 numbers.

In the latest report from the International Data Corporation (IDC), the firm said that 2012 will be a "challenging" year for the worldwide PC market as it struggles against intensifying competition from "alternative devices, global political uncertainty and a still-bumpy economic roadmap." The PC sector is expected to grow a mere 5-percent in 2012 compared to 2011's numbers, with nearly 383 million PCs expected to ship into the market across the globe.

According to the report, shipments during the first quarter were actually better than expected. This was likely due to a quicker-than-expected recovery of the HDD supply chain following the Thailand floods. There's also hope that Windows 8 will help reinvigorate the consumer market, but questions about the release date, functions, and pricing for Windows 8 limit the contribution the new OS may make.

"Consumer sentiment could be revived with UltraBook or Ultrathin systems provided the right price is reached," said said Jay Chou, senior research analyst with IDC's Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker. "More price-cutting in the Android tablet landscape could free up some budget for PC purchases, but could also focus consumers on tablets rather than PCs. Ultimately, we expect modest PC growth this year as the industry works through the transition to Win8 and related devices."

Here in the States, the PC sector will continue to endure the "perfect storm" over the next few quarters before seeing any meaningful growth. This is due to consumers and business that have already bought a PC, and have no need to upgrade or expand. The upcoming presidential election is also putting a strain on the American people, forcing them to refrain from spending or hiring until early next year.

"The good news, however, is that the forthcoming release of Windows 8 promises to bring new classes of products that could lead to a stronger refresh cycle as the year ends," said David Daoud, research director, Personal Computing at IDC.

ARM-based desktops and hybrid laptops are just two examples of the new classes, the latter including Microsoft's just-revealed Surface slate. Powered either with an ARM or x86-based SoC (depending on the model), it goes beyond the tablet form factor by offering a cover that performs as a super-thin keyboard. The ARM-based Windows RT version is slated to launch this fall with the Windows 8 Pro x-86 version set to launch 90 days thereafter.

IDC expects the revamp of a sleeker Wintel platform to fuel additional growth in 2013 through 2016. Worldwide PC growth should reach 413.6 million units in 2013, then climb to nearly 491 million units in 2015 and 528.5 million units in 2016.

"Meanwhile, headwinds from the Euro crisis are increasingly being felt in the emerging markets, the previous stalwarts of growth. The outlook for emerging markets has become more mixed with Central Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEMA) increasing its outlook while Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) and Latin America will experience slower growth in the short term," the firm said.

To read the full report, head here.

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  • 6 Hide
    SneakySnake , June 20, 2012 11:28 PM
    Surface baby. If that thing has HD4000/trinity on the pro model it will be a day 1 purchase.

    Being able to play SC2 and DOTA on my tablet with the KB and a bluetooth mouse :) 
  • -3 Hide
    LORD_ORION , June 21, 2012 12:07 AM
    Push them where? Off a cliff?

    Agreed.

    The only thing pushing sales is Sandy & Ivy Bridge.
  • -5 Hide
    Nintendork , June 21, 2012 12:11 AM
    SneakySnakeSurface baby. If that thing has HD4000/trinity on the pro model it will be a day 1 purchase.Being able to play SC2 and DOTA on my tablet with the KB and a bluetooth mouse


    For that you buy a Laptop like Samsung 5 series ultrathin with Low Power A10-4655M.

    http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Series-NP535U4C-A01US-14-Inch-Laptop/dp/B0083S3N3W#fullspecs
  • 2 Hide
    lradunovic77 , June 21, 2012 2:00 AM
    Tablet market will declined. There was initial hype with Apple iPad but that's all to it.
  • 0 Hide
    SneakySnake , June 21, 2012 2:25 AM
    lradunovic77Tablet market will declined. There was initial hype with Apple iPad but that's all to it.


    MS Surface (Pro version) is a fully functional windows computer. It makes both tablets and ultrabooks kinda obsolete, as it seems to be the perfect hybrid of them
  • 2 Hide
    SteelCity1981 , June 21, 2012 2:41 AM
    Meanwhile everyone that buys a laptop or desktop with Windows 8 will push Windows 7 downgrade sales. lol

    Basicly what it's coming down to is a tale of two OSes Windows 8 for tablet based systems and Windows 7 for desktop and Laptop systems. I wouldn't be surprised if Windows 9 has two diff version because of this. A Windows 9 Tablet Edition for those with tablets and touch screens and a Windows 9 PC Edition for those with desktops and laptops.
  • 3 Hide
    killerclick , June 21, 2012 6:49 AM
    SneakySnakeMS Surface (Pro version) is a fully functional windows computer. It makes both tablets and ultrabooks kinda obsolete, as it seems to be the perfect hybrid of them


    Well, a netbook could be called a fully functional Windows computer as well, depending on your needs really.

    The Surface Pro is a bit too thick and heavy to be a nice tablet, and not quite suited for actual serious work due to its crippled ULV processor and a netbook-sized screen. Sure you can technically run Photoshop/CS on it, but who's going to drop $700 for a license and then squint at the 10" screen? Not that many people I bet.
  • 0 Hide
    DjEaZy , June 21, 2012 9:34 AM
    IDC: Windows 8, Ultrabooks Will Push 2012 PC Sales??? Yeah... it will, but down...