20 per cent of laptop buyers opted for netbooks in Q4 08
Consumer uptake even higher
Almost a third of consumer-oriented portable PCs shipped in Europe in Q4 2008 were netbooks, market watcher IDC has said.
Netbook shipments accounted for 20 per cent of all mobile computers shipped in the quarter.
IDC's numbers cover the whole of Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), but it's Western Europe where the vast majority of machines were sold in to resellers and retailers. Some 3.6m "mini-laptops" shipped into EMEA.
For 2008 as a whole, EMEA netbook shipments came in at just under 7m units. In other words, more than half of the year's shipments came in the Christmas quarter alone. IDC didn't give Q3 2008 figures, but the strength of Q4 shipments suggests big quarter-on-quarter growth.
Acer, always a strong player in the European laptop market, took the top slot during the quarter, acccounting for 30.3 per cent of netbook shipments in Q4 2008, IDC said. Asus was close behind - with a 28 per cent share. HP, Samsung and Dell followed with market shares of 7.0 per cent, 6.4 per cent and 4.3 per cent, respectively.
"Consumers benefited from the plethora of new models appearing on the shelves from October onwards, and the explosion in the product offering stimulated fierce competition for shelf space," said Eszter Morvay, research manager at IDC's EMEA personal computing group.
"Following in the footsteps of Asus, there are currently more than 50 vendors, from international players to local assemblers, with a mini-notebook offering across EMEA, which is clearly contributing to the ongoing buoyancy.''
In short, expect the netbook segment to show "robust double-digit growth" this year, making for "a key growth opportunity in EMEA in 2009 amid the ongoing global economic recession". ®
Acer Aspire One
Asus Eee 1000
Dell Mini 9
But what about the extended warranty store salesman always lean on you buy? That high-margin add-on is going to be bringing in less and less for the store fronts.
We got two Aspire Ones running Linux
and have been absolutely delighted. We used to take our 13" MacBooks everywhere, but now the Aspire Ones travel instead.
The Wife is happy with Linpus and Acer's consumer friendly front end, but I dropped Ubuntu's Netbook Remix on mine. All the hardware worked out of the box, it boots in one minute and no Microsoft software on it at all.
Best thing - we got two of the 8GB SSD, linux models for the same price we would have paid for of one XP 120GB models. I've never seen clearer evidence of the Microsoft tax.
These are very, very sweet - and economical - little computers. In fact we like them so much we're purchasing a third as it seems Acer is moving to the 10" screen.
It's the XP, stupid
Many people choose a netbook having realised that unless you pay megabucks, the alternative is a big, heavy machine with an underpowered processor, brought to its knees by pre-installed Vista.
I say the netbook's killer feature is not more room in your backpack for sandwiches, it's XP.
I use Windows ...
.. but I'm NOT a Microsoft fan. The problem I had with Linux (Ubuntu, and give me a break for the next comment) was it just didn't do what I wanted it to do with the ease of XP on a fully functional multimedia/Home Office/Surfing/Email box, i.e. an "over spec'ed system". But I need to think again.
I like simplicity and I like ease of use. Linux (Ubuntu maybe) on a platform such as a netbook, just might be exactly what I'm looking for in a very portable box. Mostly I use it as a portable storage system for photographs since my wife and I are rather proficient amateur photographers and we have post retirement travel in the near future. Specifically, travel with a Windows laptop for use as an email station and as a storage depot for pic files. But the idea of a smaller, simplier netbook with Linux is beginning to make great sense.
I'm really very familiar with the capabilities of Ubuntu and, quite frankly, a netbook with Linux and a BIG external hard drive has all of a sudden become very appealing.
We'll always use Windows, its just too embedded to dump (tried it) but the idea of moving away from a Windows laptop is an idea I need to really consider. Maybe eventually other platforms too. One success usually breeds others and I like that idea.
20 percent is 1/3? This needs to be moved to the advertising section where it belongs.