A picture of a slowly improving PC market in the enterprise space continues to emerge but the consumer end remains sluggish holding back more of a full grown recovery in the hardware space.
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Adding to figures from other analysts IHS Technology numbers for the fourth quarter showed that unit shipments worldwide increased by 9.4% from Q3 to 52.6m units but it missed market expectations and year-on-year was down by 5%.
The sequential rise from the third to fourth quarters was the strongest since the end of 2009 and there are hopes that the end of Windows XP support will kick in some more desktop refreshes bringing a halt to the declines of the last couple of years.
“Things were looking positive for the fourth quarter of 2013 after the third had come in on target. The introduction of new platforms and the arrival of Intel’s new-generation Atom processor Bay Trail were expected to enable a new entry-level pricing point for the PC market not seen since the netbook,” said Craig Stice, director for compute, servers and storage at IHS.
But on the laptop front users are still tending to opt for tablets and smart phones and despite some refreshes and the attraction of Bay Trail, with its longer battery times and graphics performance, IHS was downbeat on hopes that the industry could get back to double digit growth.
The IHS numbers add to other reports that indicate there has been a slight improvement in the enterprise market as users start to move away from aging technology to take advantage of the latest bits of kit the vendors have to offer.