Not only are netbook sales set to explode in 2009 and beyond – they’re also supposed to brush aside ultraportable laptops in the eyes of consumers.
According to the International Data Corp, 20.6 million netbooks will be shipped this year – twice as many as ultraportables. Ultraportables are a size up from netbooks, coming in at about 11-13.3 inch display sizes and 2-4 founds. They have made up about 8-10% of the notebook market, said one IDC analyst.
As of 2009, however, their piece of the consumer pie will drop to a mere 5.7%. To contrast, netbooks will crank it up all the way to 12.3%. O’Donnel of the IDC summarized it succinctly: “Mininotebooks — which is what we prefer to call them because ‘netbook’ is an Intel marketing term — are having a big impact on ultraportables.”
UMPCs were factored in as well, and are expected to sell barely a million devices this year. This is three times the number in 2008, but little compared to netbook sales. Their sales may grow in 2010 as well – “They’re enjoying a very slow climb, but they’re too small and too underpowered,” said Kevin Burden of ABI.
The only portable sector not yet outsold by the netbook category are, of course, laptops. IDC puts their sales at a 15% increase over 2008, raising them to a solid 137 million.