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PC sales surge in Asia

Singapore, Oct. 21 (AFP): Sales of personal computers (PCs) in Asia surged past six million units for the first time in the September quarter, a report released today said.

Research house International Data Corp. (IDC) said its preliminary data for the three months showed demand in Asia outside of Japan grew 12 per cent from the previous quarter to 6.52 million units, or a 15 per cent increase from last year’s September quarter. However, corporate demand was still weak in the region with sales in key economies such as South Korea and India falling slightly below expectations, IDC said.

“Although a six-million unit breakthrough is encouraging, corporate purchases are still generally slow across the region,” IDC said. China was the main catalyst for the jump in PC demand, but hopes the market would recover from last year’s downturn was premature at this stage given the anaemic global economic conditions, IDC said.

“The breakthrough of this mental milestone should serve to encourage the industry during such gloomy times,” said Bryan Ma, IDC’s regional research manager for personal systems. “But the main reason for this growth was the seasonal activity in the enormous Chinese PC market,” he said.

“Although other countries grew, a full recovery in the region could still take some time given the worldwide economic uncertainty prevalent today.”

Demand will improve in the lead up to the year-end festive season but “an immediate rebound is not expected given the weak global economy that has been made even more uncertain with recent speculation of a US-led war in Iraq.”

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