Taipei, April 13 (CNA) Global notebook computer shipments in the second quarter of this year are expected to grow dramatically, following better-than-expected figures in the January to March period, a Taipei-based analyst firm said Friday.
Digitimes Research forecast worldwide notebook shipments of 55 million units in the second quarter, a 17.6 percent quarterly increase and a 9.5 percent rise year-on-year.
"This foreshows a full recovery of the industry in 2012," said Joanne Chien, Digitimes senior analyst.
She predicted that global notebook shipments for the whole year will reach 236 million units, up 17 percent from 2011, with the introduction of more low- to medium-priced models and the release of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 8 operating system.
In terms of brand breakdown, Asustek Computer Inc. and Apple Inc. are both expected to post 30 percent growth, with the former very likely to replace Dell Inc. as the world's fourth largest notebook brand, she said.
However, Samsung Electronics Co. and Toshiba Corp., which also did well in the first three months, might have a hard time in the second quarter, Chien said.
The South Korean and Japanese companies will not be able to maintain their momentum, as they are struggling to keep up with the average growth of the industry, she said.
As for the Ultrabook market, global shipments are forecast at 1.5 million units in the second quarter, approximately the same as the expected strong showing by Apple's MacBook Air.
However, Ultrabooks will continue to trail in the notebook market, accounting only 2.7 percent of the total, Chien forecast.
(By James Lee)