Research firm IDC has revised its 2001 forecast for personal computer shipments, and if the new projections prove accurate, this will be the first year ever that worldwide PC shipments will have declined from the preceding year.
"This is an indication of a PC industry recession that will last for the next two years due to anemic sales, followed by a modest recovery in 2003," said IDC analyst Roger Kay. The drop-off will be caused by slower sales in the second half of the year. Typically, the third and fourth quarters bring in strong sales because of back-to-school and holiday sales, but in 2001 they are expected to be weaker than in previous years. U.S. sales of consumer PCs are expected to drop 17.3 percent this year.
Worldwide shipment projections were also adjusted from 10.3 percent growth to 5.8 percent and will be strongly affected by the fluctuating U.S. market. Additionally, a softening European PC market and slowing growth in the Japanese market are expected to hurt worldwide shipments.