Gartner warns of lower PC, chip sales

Michael Carroll
02/09/2010
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In another sign of slowing global demand, Gartner has cut its global PC outlook and warns of likely lower chip sales.

The research firm trimmed its PC outlook by two percentage points for the second half on lower consumer demand in the US and Western Europe, and said it expects semiconductor shipments to be “below seasonal norms.”

The lower forecasts reinforce a warning from tech leader Intel last week that third quarter sales would fall because of weaker demand.

Gartner now expects PC sales to grow 15.3% in the second half and full-year shipments to increase 19.2% to 367.8 million units.

“The PC market revived in the first half of 2010, but the real test of its resilience is yet to come,” research director Ranjit Atwal said.

“There is no doubt that consumer, if not business PC demand has slowed relative to expectations in mature markets,” Atwal said.

Gartner said after strong growth in chip sales in the first half, it “is becoming increasingly clear that the industry cannot maintain the momentum in the second half of 2010 and into 2011.”

In its lowered outlook last week Intel said sales in the third quarter would be between $10.8 and $11.2 billion, compared to the previous forecast of between $11.2 and $12.0 billion, a result of “weaker than expected demand for consumer PCs in mature markets.”

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