Indonesia, Malaysia biggest markets in the region
15in and 17in models surge in demand
DESPITE recent technological advancements in mobile devices and consumer trends shifting towards the latest portable products, sales of mobile computers managed to hit nearly 4.9 milllion units in South-East Asia’s six key markets in the first three quarters of this year.
Across the region’s tracked markets of Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam, Indonesia is the largest market contributing to over a third (35%) of overall laptop sales volume and a lower proportion of 28% in sales value, market research firm GfK said in a statement.
Malaysia is the second biggest market, accounting for 21% and 22% respectively of the region’s total volume and value sales.
“The growing focus on convenience and portability in recent years has shifted consumer preference towards buying mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, inevitably impacting demand in the overall laptop market,“ said Gerard Tan, account director for Digital World at GfK Asia.
“At the same time, Thailand’s lacklustre sales due to the political unrest which took place earlier in the year had some bearing on the sector’s performance in the region<‘ he added.
Although trending down in general, latest GfK retail findings revealed that laptops with larger screen sizes have been gaining ground.
While all other sizes exhibited lower performance when compared with a year ago, the 15in and 17in (and larger) segments exhibited strong growth of 61% and 49% in take-up rates.
The total market share of the slightly smaller 15inch category expanded by eight percentage points to now occupy 18% of the region’s overall sales, making up nearly one in every five laptops sold.
“With the portability criteria already fulfilled by smartphones and tablets, it makes sense for consumers who are still seeking smart connected devices to acquire a device with larger screen,“ said Tan.
“Besides, consumers are increasingly using computers for consumption of digital content these days, and bigger screens make for better viewing experiences,“ he added.
Malaysia and Vietnam especially reported the highest rise in demand for 15in laptops, garnering additional sales in this particular segment of around 142,000 and 96,000 units this year compared with last year.
“Falling prices is one of the key attributing factors aiding the strong growth of the 15in laptop segment, as the gap between 14in and 15in models have significantly narrowed in the past one year,“ said Tan.
“In Malaysia for instance, consumers snapped up more 15in laptops when the average price fell by 16% compared with last year, reducing the price difference from that of smaller sized models.
“Consumers have been delaying their purchase of mobile computers as they put their dollars in other newer and innovative mobile devices.
“However, as their laptop goes through the usual cycle and is due for an upgrade, we can expect some form of recovery in time to come,” he added.
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