Gartner Slashes PC Sales Forecast As Buyers Look To Tablets

Gartner has slashed its forecast for global computer shipments in 2010 and 2011 as consumers look to buy tablets over PCs.

The research firm said that the increasing popularity of mobile devices and the current economic climate are also to blame for reduced growth in PC sales.

Gartner now expects PC sales to grow by 14.3 per cent in 2010, down from the 17.9 per cent predicted earlier this year. For 2011, the company now predicts an increase of 15.9 per cent, having previously forecast growth to be 18.1 per cent.

Research director at Gartner Ranjit Atwal said in a statement: “These results reflect marked reductions in expected near-term unit growth based on expectations of weaker consumer demand, due in no small part to growing interest in media tablets such as the iPad.”

"Over the longer term, media tablets are expected to displace around 10 per cent of PC units by 2014," he added.

Research analyst at Gartner Raphael Vasquez suggested that the increasing popularity of mobile devices could also affect PC sales.

“PC market growth will be impacted by devices that enable better on-the-go content consumption, such as media tablets and next-generation smartphones,” he said.

"These devices will be increasingly embraced as complements if not substitutes for PCs where voice and light data consumption are desired."