The growth rate for PC shipments in China dropped to 13 percent in the third quarter, far slower than earlier rates, according to a preliminary report from researcher IDC. In the first quarter of 2001, for instance, PC shipments in China grew by 49 percent compared with the same period a year earlier. China accounts for roughly 43 percent of PC shipments to Asia, so the slowdown in growth could be ominous.
"China has thus far been the poster child for the PC market, and a moderation in growth does not bode well for the industry," Ashok Kumar, an analyst with Piper Jaffray, wrote about IDC's findings. As in the United States, Dell Computer was the only large multinational PC maker to experience growth in China. Compaq, Samsung and IBM all saw sales shrink in the third quarter in China. Although Dell grew faster than China's Legend computer, Legend remained firmly in the No. 1 spot with 660,000 units.