UK PC sales to decline in 2009

Recession takes its toll as Gartner predicts sales to decline three per cent next year
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The UK PC channel will be hit hard over the next 12 months, according to Gartner, which dramatically slashed its unit forecast for the market by 15 per cent yesterday, adding that revenues are likely to fall sharply too.

According to Gartner, the UK will see a three per cent fall in PC shipments during 2009 as the recession bites. The channel is not expected to see growth return until 2010.

Blaming the rapid changes taking place in the UK economy, principle analyst at Gartner, Ranjit Atwal told Microscope: "This is the first time since 2000 that UK Plc will have seen negative growth. The speed at which the economy has changed is the biggest worry and we are expecting a shaper and deeper downturn."

The revised figures now mean that the firm is expecting UK PC shipments to top off at 12 million units, while revenues are predicted to hit £5.2bn, down 18 per cent year-on-year.

However, rather more worryingly for the supermarkets and chains, analysts warned that price would has less of an impact on sales. Indeed, this was echoed by Dell recently, which said that it was 'unclear' how the market would react to the economic uncertainty.

Only last month, fellow analysts at IDC reported that the UK channel would see growth, but only at three per cent. That figure had been revised from 13 per cent.

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