Notebooks pass desktops in U.S. retail sales for first time

“Sales of notebooks surpassed desktop sales in the U.S. retail segment for the first time, according to a report from Current Analysis. Notebooks accounted for 50.9 percent of personal computers bought at retail in 2005, while desktops accounted for 49.1 percent. In 2004, notebooks accounted for only 43 percent of U.S. retail sales, while desktops accounted for 57 percent,” Michael Kanellos reports for CNET News. “The United States only accounts for roughly 9 percent of the worldwide market, and retail figures exclude sales from large resellers to corporations or direct sales from companies like Dell. Still, retail is an important segment, and overall notebook sales are rising, too.”

“‘We’re seeing a fundamental shift in consumer buying behavior. We expect this trend to continue as 2006 will give the mass market dual-core processors and 64-bit capabilities,’ said Sam Bhavnani, an analyst at Current Analysis,” Kanellos reports.

Full article here.

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  1. This is unit sales. In dollar share, notebooks probably have surpassed desktops some years ago.

    “We’re seeing a fundamental shift in consumer buying behavior…”

    Let’s hope so. I see so many Apples in airports nowadays. 5 years ago I had the only one.

  2. “The United States only accounts for roughly 9 percent of the worldwide market”

    If you’ve traveled outside the country you will notice that the average home/apt is smaller than here in the US. It is not surprising that notebooks are more popular outside the US where there is often not a convenient space to set up a desktop system. With wireless networking so readily available, the laptop gains even more attraction. The more powerful dual core processors give this generation of laptops as much power as the average desktops.

  3. I can’t believe that Americans buy only 9% of all computers sold per year. What, Europe would be about the same or slightly more.

    Are all the other countries in the world spending every penny of their foreign aid on computers?

  4. it’s exactly $8 trillion, and that has almost nothing to do with the nations purchasing capacity (the US has to slightly increase taxes to offset the interest… don’t get me wrong, it’s becoming an issue despite what republicans say).

    Al: I think that the 9% mark is startlingly low concidering our percentage of total consumption is around 40%. How many computers are there in Ethiopia?

  5. Apple saw this trend a few years ago. Jobs commented on it in one of his MWSF keynotes. Circa 2003, maybe?

    This, more than anything else, is the reason for the transition to Intel. IBM was killing Apple’s notebook lineup.

    Notebooks used to be underpowered compared to desktops. But now notebook processors and HD’s are respectable, and can handle the needs of most folks. Why not have a notebook instead of a desktop, for the average Joe or Jane? Takes less space, and is portable for those times when you need/want portability.

    Eventually, notebooks will be powerful enough and sufficiently cost effective that desktops will be reserved only for high-end high-performance applications.

  6. Big Al

    That 9% quoted figure is for worldwide retail sales. US corporations will buy via a VAR, and large number of consumer purchases in the US will be completed online. Neither of these are included.

    So you can sleep soundly in your beds. You’re still the biggest consumers out there, and not just of doughnuts ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”wink” style=”border:0;” />

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