The notebook market grew by value in the first quarter of this year, despite volumes dipping slightly.
Latest data from DisplaySearch reveals that in Q1 total notebook sales grew to $31.1bn, the largest single quarter since Q3 2008 when notebook average selling prices (ASPs) were more than 20 per cent higher than today. Although the average selling price for notebooks, they increased for every other category, with double-digit jumps for mini-note PC/tablet and ultra portable devices.
ASPs in the tablet sector were not impacted by Apple’s iPad as the product was not available in Q1. Rather, the introduction of new models with more features and second-generation CPUs helped to push up set prices and increase revenue in this category. In the ultra-portable market, a new crop of products that were launched in and around CES in January helped push revenues up by six per cent quarter on quarter. However, they were still below 2009 levels.
The positive year-on-year revenue growth in Q1 2010 was a result of very strong mini-note PC/tablet sales in Latin America and Asia Pacific, as well as continued growth in China and North America. Shipments of partable class notebook PCs surged YOY in Asia Pacific, China and Latin America. Meanwhile, shipments of desktop replacement class notebook PCs surged in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Japan.
Shipment growth in the mini-note PC/tablet category exceeded the average for the notebook market as a whole, but it appears that the momentum is shifting from mini-note PCs to tablets. In Q4 ’09 there were no consumer-orientated tablets in the market,a nd the devices that did exist were targeted at small, vertical markets. In Q1 2010 Apple shipped almost 700,000 iPads into the channel, accounting for 6.5 per cent of all tablets. In the first two months of Q2, the company sold more than two milion iPads.
“The last quarter of 2007 heraled the birth of the mini-note PC (netbook),” said John F Jacobs, director of Notebook Market Research at DisplaySearch. “Q1 2010 signalled the birth of the slate PC and possibly by extension the end of the notebook. Apple has ported their successful iPhone app business model to the iPad. Android-based phones followed in their footsteps and will surely do the same with slates. The result will be that buyers of slates will be able to take advantage of this a la carte software model.”