Mobility and renewal drive German PC market

The German PC market returned to positive trends, as overall PC shipments recorded a solid 10.5 per cent increase year on year in 2007, reports IDC's EMEA Quarterly PC Tracker. Notebook sales drove overall market dynamics, especially in the consumer and SMB spaces, reaching growth of 23 per cent and 30 per cent respectively, over the previous year.

The German PC market returned to positive trends as overall PC shipments recorded a solid 10.5 per cent increase year on year in 2007, reports IDC's EMEA Quarterly PC Tracker. Notebook sales drove overall market dynamics, especially in the consumer and SME spaces, reaching growth of 23 per cent and 30 per cent respectively, over the previous year.

The desktop market continued to contract, declining by 3 per cent, directly impacted by the transition to mobility in the consumer and SME sectors. However, corporate demand helped maintain overall volumes, leading to double-digit growth in corporate desktop sales, thanks to the new wave of renewals in the enterprise space.

In 2007, the German PC market was primarily driven by SME demand for notebooks, as businesses continued to shift to mobile platforms and SOHO users benefited from attractive deals in the retail channel. The renewal of the installed base and the replacement of desktops by notebooks will remain key drivers of SME growth in 2008. Assisted by further price declines, SMEs will benefit from better connectivity and security features, along with dedicated products, support, and services, as vendors and channels try to differentiate themselves among intensifying competition.

"The German PC market [will] continue to display healthy trends in the coming quarters and forecasts over 9 per cent overall growth in 2008," says Eszter Morvay, senior research analyst for IDC's EMEA PC research group. "The key engine of growth will be unrelenting demand for mobility, boosting notebook sales by close to 20 per cent. As a result, the share of notebook shipments is expected to reach around 60 per cent in 2008, up from 55 per cent last year."

Desktop volumes did see a recovery in the corporate segment, benefiting from the new wave of enterprise hardware refreshes starting in mid-2007. As the segment almost solely relies on renewal demand, growth is largely dependent on PC life cycles. With the average PC life cycle at four years, the corporate market showed a healthy rebound in 2003 to 2004, while the new cycle, which lifted the market in 2007, is expected to continue into 2008, boosting unit shipments across both desktops and notebooks.

IDC's EMEA Quarterly PC Tracker gathers PC market data in 55 countries, by vendor, product category, sub-form factor, brand, user segment, channel, processor, and notebook screen size. The research includes historical and forecast trend analysis as well as price band and installed base data. www.idc.com

Image: The key engine of growth in the German PC market will be unrelenting demand for mobility, boosting notebook sales

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