UK technology sales hit 20 year low

Poor IT sales due to falling popularity of desktops
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Summer sales of IT products were down almost ten per cent this year, in what has been the worst quarter for UK technology retail in two decades, a survey has found.

According to market research by GfK Retail and Technology, notebooks remained popular, however, a drop in demand for desktops meant that IT sales came to just £1.776bn last quarter – a decrease of 9.6 per cent on the same period in 2008.

Storage devices were the only category to see a rise in sales. GfK predicts that any overall market growth for the IT sector in the future will be due to the continuing popularity of netbooks, along with telecom operators offering subsidised laptop deals.

Consumer electronics products also took a hit in Q2 2009, with sales down 6.3 per cent from the second quarter last year. High definition TVs showed a sales decline, which was not counterbalanced by growth in other areas.

GfK has noted that the UK market has been slow to embrace Blu-ray technology, but expects a revitalisation of the category by the end of the year, once the first recordable Blu-ray player is launched.

While the telecom sector has seen a small drop of 0.6 per cent, Smartphones have shown high levels of growth, with weekly sales rising from £1m in early May to £10m in late June.

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