IT research firm Gartner reported that it expects double-digit increases in PC units being shipped during 2005, although revenue will remain essentially flat.
Gartner's forecast anticipates 206.6 million PCs to be shipped worldwide this year, up 12.7 percent, generating sales of $202.7 billion, up 0.5 percent. The industry is on track to produce very similar numbers in 2006, Gartner reported, with shipments expected to grow 10.5 percent with revenue increasing 0.4 percent.
Gartner analysts said falling average selling prices are to blame for the disparity between unit shipments and revenue. Falling notebook computer prices played a large role in driving down ASPs for desktop units. As these prices have fallen vendors have been forced to lower desktop prices to maintain the value proposition of desktops at the entry level, said Mitako Kitagawa, principle analyst for Gartner's client platform group.
Further down the road Gartner expects ASPs to firm up to some extent.
“Mounting cost pressures will eventually slow ongoing ASP declines, especially if PC component prices are firm,” said George Shiffler, another Gartner principle analyst.