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Worldwide Q2 PC sales up a little on last year…

...but well down on last quarter

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Worldwide PC shipments will grow just 6.4 per cent this quarter, compared to Q2 2002, market researcher Gartner believes. However, shipments will fall sequentially by 10.9 per cent, a point the company doesn't make in its press release.

Some 30.7 million PCs will ship around the world during Q2 2003, generating $38.3 billion in sales, up 2.6 per cent on the same period last year, Gartner said today. Back in April it posted data showing that 34.5 million PCs shipped worldwide in Q1 2003. Even Q1 2002 was better than what Gartner is expecting for Q2 2003: back them, 32.7 million PCs shipped.

While the war in Iraq may be over, the anticipated bounce doesn't appear to be lifting sales - to corporates in particular - as more deep-seated fears about the state of the world economy come back to haunt potential buyers, Gartner believes. As for SARS, well it's having an effect on Far Eastern economies, but it has yet to strike fear into the hearts of Western PC buyers. If the disease spreads, that may change.

Gartner's numbers for the year as a whole put shipments at 136.9 million, up 6.6 per cent on 2002, and sales at $170.6 million, up 3.3 per cent.

Gartner rival, IDC today published its figures for the state of the UK PC market during Q1. UK PC shipments grew five per cent year on year, driven by a rebound in business spending, the researcher said. Notebooks lead the way: mobile PC shipments rose 14.7 per cent during the period. Desktop shipments grew just one percentage point over Q1 2002.

Shipments to businesses rose ten per cent for desktops. Consumers, on the other hand, bought far fewer desktops, leading to a fall in shipments of 12.7 per cent. Businesses bought 12 per cent more notebooks than they did in the year-ago quarter, and consumers were tempted by portable PCs too: shipments rose 22.8 per cent.

The Intel server market also experienced healthy growth of 15.1 per cent year-on-year, "further testament to a gradual pick-up in business confidence", said IDC. ®

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