Recovery boosts Asia-Pacific PC sales to 3 million

Recovery boosts Asia-Pacific PC sales to 3 million

Sales of PCs in the Asia-Pacific region (excluding Japan) grew by 18 per cent in the second quarter of 1999 over the first quarter to top the 3 million unit mark for the first time ever, according to figures released yesterday by market analyst International Data Corp.

Unit sales were 34 per cent higher than for the same quarter a year ago, IDC said in the report.

Economic recovery, price erosion, government tenders, year 2000-related spending and a number of subsidised PC purchase with Internet access bundles are some of the key reasons for the strong sales figures, IDC said.

Revenues from PC sales in the region were up 11.5 per cent over the previous quarter and 33 per cent over the equivalent period in 1998, underlining the strong recovery of IT spending in the region, IDC said.

All of the countries in Asia-Pacific posted higher sales than in the same quarter of 1998, but there were wide variations in growth, according to IDC.

The fastest growing major markets were South Korea, which saw sales rise 78 per cent over the year-earlier period to 488,000 units, and Taiwan, with sales more than doubling over the same quarter last year to 335,000 units.

Other Southeast Asian countries hit by the 1997 economic crisis also recorded high annual PC sales growth, with Indonesia's market growing over the same quarter in the previous year by 461 per cent in unit terms, Thailand's by 62 per cent and the Philippines' by 40 per cent. The advanced economies of Hong Kong and Singapore both saw PC unit shipments grow over 30 per cent over the previous year, IDC said.

China, which accounts for almost 40 per cent of PC sales in the region, was one of the slowest growing markets with sales up over the previous year's quarter by 17.6 per cent to 1.2 million units. The second largest market remained Australia, which grew by 16.1 per cent over the year-earlier period to reach 540,000 unit sales.

IBM is the leading vendor in the region, with 315,000 unit sales in the second quarter, 47 per cent up on sales the same quarter in the previous year, according to IDC figures. The fastest-growing major vendor was China's Legend Group, which posted a 78 per cent growth in sales over the same quarter last year to 261,000 units despite the Mainland's overall slow PC sales growth -- a sign that the company is rapidly gaining market share on its home ground, IDC said.

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