Netbooks boom despite recession

Devices accounted for 30 per cent of all consumer laptop sale during fourth quarter
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Devices accounted for 30 per cent of all consumer laptop sale during fourth quarter

Demand for netbooks failed to dampen during the fourth quarter in EMEA, figures from IDC have revealed.

Netbooks accounted for 20 per cent of all portable sales, and a staggering one third of all consumer laptop purchases during the fourth quarter.

The combination of strong sales during the key back-to-school period and continued demand for netbooks during the Christmas build-up resulted in a sales boom for the second half of 2008.

"As expected, netbooks were one of the most sought-after items in the Christmas season, particularly in Western Europe, which represented over 80 per cent of volumes," commented IDC's EMEA personal computing group research manager Eszter Morvay.

Morvay put much of the demand down to a push by the channel into the retail sector. "Driven by strong vendor and channel push, consumers benefited from the plethora of new models appearing on the shelves from October onwards, and the explosion in the product offering stimulated fierce competition for shelf space."

She also revealed how emancipating the new platform had been for the industry, adding that it the combination of traditional, diversified and local vendors was having a positive impact on purchases.

"Following in the footsteps of Asus, there are currently more than 50 vendors, from international players to local assemblers, with a mini-notebook offering across EMEA, which is clearly contributing to the ongoing buoyancy."

The telco channel also played a major part in continued sales of devices, according to IDC.