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Netbook shipments surge

Industry-beating growth in 2009

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Last year was a good 12 months for netbook makers: together they shipped 30.2 million of the mini laptops.

That, market watcher Strategy Analytics said this week, is 79 per cent more than they managed in 2008.

To put that into context, fellow researcher IDC earlier this year put 2009's total PC shipments at 294.2m units. IDC didn't issue a specific figure for laptops, but you're looking at 50-60 per cent of that total being portable PCs: 147.1-176.52m units.

So netbooks accounted for around 17-20 per cent of the total - a long way, for now, from the 90 per cent share ARM CEO Warren East says we should anticipate. The segment's growth rate well exceeded the PC business as a whole, which, according to IDC, was up just 2.3 per cent on 2008.

SA said Acer, Asus, HP and Dell were the leading netbook suppliers last year, though the remainder were by no means in the minority.

The researcher forecast further growth this year as netbook chips deliver more performance and ARM licensees take on Intel's dominant Atom platform. ®

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