EMEA PC shipments reached over 24.6 million units in the final quarter of 2006 growing by 10.4 per cent compared with the same period the previous year, according to preliminary data released by research specialist IDC.

Notebooks sales push EMEA growth in Q4 2006

The sustained growth of PC sales in the region during the quarter was attributed to continued portable adoption, healthy consumer sales, and ongoing expansion in CEMA, while notebook sales continued to outpace the market with 28 per cent year on year growth. More than 75 million PCs were shipped in the EMEA region for the year, though the report claimed that desktops “failed to return to positive trends.”

HP and Acer bolstered their position in the consumer and SMB markets, with Acer ousting Dell from the number two spot in the region during the quarter. However slow commercial demand was blamed as a negative impact on growth for Dell, Fujitsu Siemens, and Lenovo.

“This year has clearly marked, through the accelerated development of the notebook market, the importance of effective and time-to-market product strategies and the need for vendors to develop stronger branding strategies," said Karine Paoli, research director for IDC’s EMEA Personal Computing group. “Competitive pricing and the ability to promote technology replacement cycles effectively will remain essential to drive demand and market share, but branding and customer segmentation will become increasingly important as the market continues to expand and include a larger renewal base.”

Meanwhile, IDC predicts that this growth is set to continue into 2007, fuelled by continued notebook sales and uptake of Vista amongst other things.

Paoli continued: “While 2007 will benefit from an uptake of corporate refresh cycles expected to start mid-2007 and peak in 2008, migrations to Vista in the consumer and SMB space, along with continued portable adoption across the region, and an increasing renewal market, will also continue to represent key market opportunities and assist EMEA growth moving forward.”

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