CONTEXT: PC sales on the up

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Sales of notebooks, desktops and PC workstations in Western Europe have continued to rise so far in 2015.

According to the latest data from research firm CONTEXT, volume sales of PCs grew by 9.5 percent in January 2015, following growth of 20.1 percent in Q4 2014.

Sales of consumer-targeted PCs were up by 12.4 percent in early 2015 following a 24.1 percent rise in the last quarter of 2014.

While growth slowed with the end of the holiday period, channel sales in the segment have continued to benefit from the Q4 2014 sell-in push of low-cost consumer notebooks, partly driven by systems based on Microsoft’s Windows with Bing.

“The strong Q4 sell-in of budget notebooks and Bing laptops not only benefited consumer sales in the channel in January but also helped to push volume growth in the business segment,” says Marie-Christine Pygott, senior analyst at CONTEXT. “Nearly 16 percent of business-targeted notebooks going through distribution in January were based on Bing.”

Sales were also up year-on-year for consumer desktops and new types of mobile device, although growth for the latter came from a small base.

Volume sales of business-targeted PCs increased by 6.5 percent in January following an increase of 15.1 percent in Q4 2014. The slowdown in growth was predominantly due to a 14.3 percent fall in desktop sales in January as the effect of XP migration demand on sales continued to decline.

Business-targeted notebooks maintained their strong Q4 2014 performance and sales were up by 23.8 percent year-on-year. However, like in the consumer segment, growth in business notebooks was predominantly driven by lower-priced units.

CONTEXT predicts that channel sell-through of notebooks over the next few months will continue to benefit from last year’s Q3 and Q4 sell-in push of budget systems.

Average PC prices across distribution are also expected to increase as a result of the recent Euro/US dollar exchange-rate pressures and, moving further into 2015, a smaller contribution from sales of low-cost products as the end of the current Bing initiative has an effect on channel sales.

The UK posted a 19.1 percent increase in year-on-year PC sales in January 2015.


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