By Billy MacInnes
Second quarter UK netbook sales through distribution returned to the same level as last year suggesting the market has reached maturity after peaking in the last quarter of 2009.
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According to figures from Context, netbook sales by unit accounted for 24% of the overall notebook market through distribution in the second quarter of 2010, exactly the same figure as for the same period in 2009. Sales by revenue fell slightly from 16% in the second quarter of 2009 to 14% this year.
By contrast, netbooks had a 35% share by unit in the fourth quarter of 2009 and 34% in the first quarter of 2010. The trends were replicated across Europe.
Context senior research analyst Marie-Christine Pygott said the figures reflected the increasing maturing of the netbook market and increased demand for mainstream notebooks. She suggested consumers had become more willing to pay for higher performance from notebooks as they became aware of the limitations of the netbook form factor.
While it was "not really such fantastic news" for netbook makers, she believed that most had "realised it wasn't going to last forever".