Netbooks Sell Well but Don't Make Money

Ryan Whitwam

Netbooks really help the overall sales figures for PCs, but as it turns out, they aren’t so great for the bottom line . It’s the highly attractive price of netbooks that keeps them in high demand. This might actually be a negative trend for PC makers, according to market research firm, DisplaySearch.

John Jacobs, director of notebook research for DisplaySearch, said, “…the lower [average selling price (ASP)] of these devices are clearly having a negative impact on portable PC market revenue. For 2009, we expect continued ASP erosion across all portable computer categories, leading to the first [year-over-year] decline of portable computer revenue.” Netbooks are currently responsible for a staggering 21.5% of PC shipments. Even with these unit numbers, they only make up 10.9% of revenue.

Sales prices of full size notebook computers have been pushed down considerably by the netbook bonanza. Notebook prices are down 10% in the last year.  This may be an unsustainable trend in the PC market. The trend is, however, expected to continue next year.

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