Sunday, April 18, 2004

Business demand boosts global PC shipments

The Associated Press

SAN JOSE, Calif. - Worldwide PC shipments continued double-digit growth in the year's first quarter as more businesses replaced their older machines, two market-research firms said last week.

About 41.2 million units were shipped in the quarter, a 16.5 percent increase from the year-ago period, according to Framingham, Mass.-based IDC.

Gartner Inc., which uses slightly different measurement methods, reported that 45.3 million units were shipped, a 13.4 percent increase from the previous year.

The growth, which exceeded IDC's expectations by 3 percentage points, "is a good sign given the current economic environment," said Loren Loverde, director of PC research at IDC.

After two years of decline, the PC market picked up in 2003, jumping to double-digit growth for the first time since 2000.

But the surge in demand last year was driven largely by consumer purchases and the popularity of notebook computers.

During the first quarter of 2004, business purchases drove the bulk of shipments.

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