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Consumer segment fuels soaring PC sales

376 million purchases in 2010

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Worldwide sales of PCs are up almost a fifth on last year from 308.3 million to 376.6 million.

In terms of revenue the market has grown 12 per cent to $245.4bn, as consumers in the developed world increasingly see a computer as a necessity, rather than a luxury.

Ranjit Atwal, principal research analyst at Gartner, which crunched the numbers, said: "PC demand in the consumer segment continues to strengthen even though the global economy remains uncertain." He said larger businesses were expected to start PC replacement programmes in the second half of 2010 with migration to Windows 7 lasting until 2012.

Demand for mini-notebooks is still growing, but showing signs of maturing. Shipments are forecast to be 41.8 million in 2010, up 30 per cent on 2009. This gives them 18.6 per cent of the mobile computing market but this is expected to decline after this year - hitting 13.9 per cent in 2014.

Gartner's analysts do not expect "media tablets" like the iPad to hit mini-notebook sales this year but will start to eat into their sales from 2013 onwards as prices fall and functionality improves. It expects about 10 million iPad type devices to ship this year - compared to two million tablet PCs.

Regionally over half of PC growth will come from the US and China in 2011. More from Gartner here. ®

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