PC shipments in the Arab Middle East reached 380,438 units in the third quarter of 2003, up 24.5 percent from the same period last year, according to IDC figures. Growth came from all form factors as desktops, notebooks and PC servers grew at 13.8 percent, 95.8 percent and 27.8 percent respectively.
IDC’s latest results for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) reveal that from July to September, PC shipments grew by 15.2 percent year-on-year, to reach 71,558 units. Most of the growth came from the PC server segment as it increased by almost 66.6 percent year-on-year. "This comes as a result of the continued aggressive targeting of the low-end servers towards the fast growing SMB segment by almost all vendors of PC servers in the UAE," commented IDC Research Analyst for the Middle East and North Africa, Omar Shihab.
Notebooks also witnessed strong growth of 49.7 percent in the third quarter year-on-year. Vendors' launch of new notebooks, coupled with price promotions triggered this growth and escalated demand specifically within home and SMB segments. The Dubai Summer Surprises festival helped increase shipment level during the quarter and increased sales from retail channels.
Shipments for the annual IT exhibition, GITEX also arrived during this quarter which caused further escalation of notebook and overall PC unit shipments. The desktop segment on the other hand witnessed a slight decline of 2.9 percent of shipments year-on-year. This decline comes despite of vendor's launch of new desktop models based on Intel's new hyper threading chipset, in addition to shipments being delivered to several end-users in the country, namely the Abu-Dhabi ministry of education. The flat results only show that the UAE is getting closer towards saturation and becoming a replacement market for desktops, particularly for medium and large enterprises.
The Saudi PC market on the other hand witnessed a decline of 3.8 percent in the third quarter of 2003 compared to the same period last year. The drop came mainly from the desktop space as delivery of several projects to the government, several large businesses and the ministry of education came to an end. Desktops dropped by 17.7 percent year-on-year. Notebooks on the other hand had the strongest growth and expanded by 57.2 percent year-on-year.
"Major notebook vendors continued to battle fiercely within this segment of the Saudi market, as continued to drop their prices, provided after sales support and fast delivery periods to their channels and end-users," said Shihab. The SIAS market also witnessed growth of almost 28.3 percent year-on-year due mainly to the continued aggressive targeting of the low-end servers towards the SMB segment by most of the major vendors. Major changes are expected within the desktop segment, starting from next quarter, as major shipments from this segment are expected to be delivered from the new HP assembly plant in the kingdom catering the recently announced deal to the Saudi Ministry of Education.
In other markets within the Gulf, IDC's third quarter results of the year 2003 indicate escalated demand from most segments and all form factors. Shipments in Kuwait reached 29,555 units, as a result of large implementations of PCs taking place within the large corporates in the state. PC shipments to Bahrain reached 14,715 units. The mobile segment in Bahrain, however, witnessed a drop quarter-on-quarter. This comes as large shipments of notebooks –part of a desktop replacement scheme within the government and large enterprise segments- in Q2 of the year came to an end.
The Omani market witnessed a similar decline in notebook shipments quarter-on-quarter, as mobile replacements within the education sector in the Sultanate came to a stop. Qatar's market on the other hand reached a total of 13,211 units in the third quarter of 2003. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )