The appeal of the iPad, HP's upcoming Slate, and other tablets will take a bite out of Netbook sales this year, according to a report released Monday by DisplaySearch.
Driven by the iPad, the tablet market will see dramatic gains this year, taking market share away from clamshell-style Netbooks, says DisplaySearch's "Quarterly Notebook PC Shipment and Forecast Report."
Most of the growth, especially for the iPad, will come from North America and Western Europe, where Apple has set up key distribution lines and created agreements with content providers. Overall, consumers are expected to pick up around 5 million tablets this year, forecasts DisplaySearch.
But don't count out the Netbook just yet. Traditional clamshell type Netbooks, or mininotes, are expected to continue to entice customers as their average selling prices have dropped from $400 to slightly less than $300. The Apple iPad, which will account for most tablet shipments this year, starts at a price of $499 and moves up to more than $800. The low prices of Netbooks will remain appealing to people looking for a second or third PC and help lure in first-time PC buyers in emerging markets.
Ironically, though, the low prices of Netbooks will continue to result in thinner margins and lower sales numbers for their manufacturers, component suppliers, and retailers, says DisplaySearch.… Read more