Notebooks jump, desktops slump

Sales tales

The mobile PC is rapidly moving up the must-have list of organisations across the US, according to the latest study from Gartner. The firm pumped out its latest assessment of the PC marketplace and discovered that mobile PCs experienced comparatively exceptional growth.

The mobile PC market, during the second quarter of 2002, grew by 6.1% over the same period in 2001 to a total of 6.9 million units shipped. That's quite some growth given that the desktop PC market actually shrank during the second quarter. The growth was pretty much global too, with the only exceptions being Japan and Latin America. The US, however, bagged 9.1% growth during the second quarter of 2002.

Those who benefited the most from this surge in mobile PC sales were the same ones that are suffering from declining sales in the desktop PC market. Dell was the market leader, based on shipments, through the second quarter with a 14.9% share - and growth of more than 10%. HP was a close second with 14.7%. Toshiba, thanks to strong double digit growth - 11.4% - was in third place with 12.8%. IBM was in fourth position, thanks to the success of its only remaining PC product, with 10.7%. Fifth spot was reserved for Sony which, with it's well placed laptops, has grown 5% since the same period last quarter to hold 7.1% of the market.

This is a sign of the times. The desktop facilitates a breed of computing that is on its way out - slow, immovable, resource intensive. Nowadays companies would prefer to stock their sales and marketing teams with mobile devices which can take with them into client sites. Similarly with much of the management tier. They never stop working and need a device that they can rely on wherever they are.

Gartner expects the mobile PC market to outperform the desktop PC market, in terms of numbers shipped until at least the end of 2003.

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