Sales of PCs in EMEA offset 'tepid demand' from emerging economies and static sales in the US and Japan during the third quarter, according to the latest figures from IDC.
Overall, worldwide shipments were up 15.8 per cent year on year, slightly less than was projected by the research firm.
Much of the sustained growth in EMEA was put down to the emergence of low-cost laptops just as the economic situation began to deteriorate. "The proliferation of low-cost portable PCs coincided perfectly with market conditions," said IDC Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker research analyst Jay Chou.
"As more low-cost laptops enter the fray, a new pecking order may emerge among vendors as the market leans towards netbooks with ever decreasing ASPs," added Chou.
He was cautious over the effect that these declining ASPs were having on the industry, adding that it was still unclear if netbooks had opened up a new market or were simply cannibalising that of traditional laptops. "What remains to be seen is how much cannabalisation will occur, and the degree to which mounting economic pressures will stifle PC market growth over the next year."