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Tablet IC sales to rise, PC IC sales to fall

Posted: 20 Jun 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:tablets? cloud-computing? notebook?

According to the latest report from IC Insights, the persistently weak notebook PC market will be offset by stronger unit growth of touch-screen tablets!especially smaller "mini" systems with 7in and 8in displays!resulting in a four per cent increase in IC sales for all types of personal computing products this year. The combined IC sales for standard PCs, tablets and new cloud-computing portables are expected to reach $77.6 billion in 2013 compared to $74.9 billion in 2012, when the total fell six per cent from $79.6 billion in 2011, added the market analytics firm.

IC Insights is forecasting a two per cent decline in IC sales for keyboard-equipped standard PCs (desktops and notebooks) to $62.5 billion in 2013, following drops of 12 per cent in 2012 and seven per cent in 2011. IC sales for standard PCs are slumping primarily due to slowing shipments of notebooks, which are being superseded by tablets in consumer computing markets worldwide. IC sales for tablets are forecast to rise 37 per cent to $14.7 billion in 2013 after climbing 77 per cent in 2012 and 1s90 per cent in 2011.

IC Insights is raising its forecast for tablet unit shipments to 190 million systems worldwide in 2013, which would be a 62 per cent increase from 117 million in 2012. The forecast for standard PC shipments has been lowered to 347 million units in 2013, which is slightly less than a one per cent increase from 344 million units in 2012. IC Insights' forecast continues to show tablet unit shipments surpassing desktops in 2013 (190 million tablets versus 150 million desktop PCs). The updated forecast also continues to show tablet shipments exceeding notebook unit volumes in 2014, but the gap has been increased!253 million tablets versus 210 million notebooks next year.

IC Insights said it now takes the sale of nearly 2.3 tablets to roughly equal the IC dollar value of one notebook. The average IC content of a tablet is estimated at $77.50. Nearly all tablets today are made with 32bit microprocessors, which are often similar to application processors found in smartphones. The vast majority of tablet processors are built with RISC cores licensed from ARM in the U.K. instead of the x86 MPU architecture used in microprocessors sold by Intel and Advanced Micro Devices for standard PCs. ARM-based tablet microprocessors have much lower average selling prices (ASPs) than x86 MPUs!often 20 per cent or less than the ASPs of PC processors. Most tablet processors are also SoC designs with integrated graphics and many system-level functions, which reduce the need for a number of ICs and chipsets that have populated notebook motherboards. Tablets also contain less DRAM than standard PCs, but they use NAND flash for internal storage instead of hard-disc drives.

The outlook for tablet IC sales has been increased with revenues projected to rise by a CAGR of about 25 per cent between 2012 and 2016, reaching $26.6 billion in the final forecast year. IC sales for standard PCs are now expected to grow by a CAGR of nearly two per cent in the four-year period to $68.5 billion in 2016. IC sales for new cloud-computing portable systems!such as Google's Chromebook platform!are forecast to increase by a CAGR of 41 per cent, from about $500 million in 2012 to $1.8 billion in 2016. These Internet-centric portables must be connected online to the web to fully function. Low-cost cloud-computing portables are expected to be a small-but-fast growing market niche, reaching 27 million systems in 2016 compared to 5 million in 2012, added IC Insights.

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