IDC: Singapore to Retain Regional Notebook Lead

SINGAPORE (08/09/2000) - Singapore will retain its standing as the largest purchaser of portable PCs in ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) until at least 2004, but the CAGR (compound annual growth rate) for such products in the nation is expected to be less than those in other regional countries.

With a projected 124,000 portable PC units shipped by the end of this year, this represents a growth of 13.9 per cent over 1999, said Kitty Fok, associate director of personal systems research at International Data Corp. (IDC) Asia-Pacific.

Research firm IDC expects Singapore's year-on-year growth in sales of portable PCs (from 1999 to 2004) to be 9.3 per cent, compared to Malaysia's 20.1 percent, 29.6 percent in India, 27.4 percent in the Philippines, 18.0 percent in Thailand and 23.6 per cent in Indonesia.

In the first quarter of this year, 32,000 portable PCs have been sold in Singapore so far, with the price sweet spot at around US$2,296, according to IDC figures. Of these, 56 percent have processor speeds of between 400MHz and 499MHz, while another 23 per cent have systems of 500MHz and higher.

Ultraportables took a 28.9 per cent share of the Singapore market, where small businesses made up the main group of portable PC buyers.

The top three vendors in the city-state were Toshiba, Compaq, and IBM, according to IDC.

Also on the global front, Fok noted the portable PC market presented the most potential for growth where IDC predicts the worldwide annual growth (from 1999 to 2004) for desktops, Intel architecture-based servers (priced under US$25,000), and portables, to be 12.8 percent, 14.9 percent and 17.1 percent, respectively.

With the growth expected to be at 26.9 per cent this year over 1999 for the worldwide portable market, Fok noted that "year 2000 is the year to expand in the market."

The future for ultraportables looks bright too, with demand for such systems to see continual growth.

"Thin and light is the mantra," Fok emphasized.

Customers will also be demanding enhanced features and functionality such as data, voice, and video capabilities in their portables that will keep them connected to the Internet anywhere anytime.

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