Context: Ultrabook sales to overtake notebooks by 2013


The popularity of Ultrabooks is on the rise, with analyst house Context predicting that sales of the devices could overtake notebook PCs for the first time by the middle of next year.

According to Context's latest PC figures, which tracked the number of Ultrabook units sold through distribution and corporate reseller channels in August, sales of the 13.3in devices were 490 per cent higher last month than in January.

Two-thirds of the Ultrabooks sold in August were reportedly bought by enterprise customers.

The market watcher said Ultrabook sales had benefited from a sharp fall in the average selling price of the devices of around 21 per cent.

Ultrabooks will become the sole notebook used in corporate environments.

Speaking to IT Pro, Senthuran Premakumar, enterprise analyst at Context, said, if current sales trends continue, the popularity of Ultrabooks should overtake notebooks by mid-2013.

"Based on our figures and vendor feedback, over the next three to four years, Ultrabooks will become the sole notebook used in corporate environments, such is the demand," he said.

Premakumar shied away from providing IT Pro with a breakdown of which Ultrabook vendors are faring best in the industry, but hinted that Samsung and HP, in particular, had benefited from cutting prices.

Aside from price, the lightness and portability of the devices were also a factor in the Ultrabook's success in the enterprise market.

"People can use it while they're commuting and it does everything you would want a notebook to do, but it is just a lot more convenient for business users," he said.

"When [Ultrabooks] first came out, they were priced too high, and maybe vendors did not see the demand they expected to, but the demand has increased now."

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.