The research firm DisplaySearch's final tally of notebook computer shipments for 2006 had 77.8 million units shipping last year, and the company expects this figure to increase by 20 million in 2007.
For the fourth quarter 2006, DisplaySearch reported notebook shipments of 23.4 million, up 14 percent from the 20.5 million units shipped the prior quarter.
DisplaySearch credited retail sales for the 27.7 percent growth the category experienced last year, citing the fact that vendors with an aggressive retail strategy enjoyed the largest gains. Manufacturers willing to quickly reduce prices and offer free upgrade promotions performed well in 2006, said John Jacobs, DisplaySearch's notebook market research director.
DisplaySearch also posted its worldwide fourth-quarter 2006 numbers, which had Hewlett-Packard as the No. 1 in notebook shipments far outpacing second place Dell; however, Dell retained its lead in the North American market, but DisplaySearch noted its quarter-over-quarter share fell to 4 percent from 6 percent.
Worldwide, HP boosted shipments 29 percents on 4.7 million units shipped for 20 percent of the market. Dell saw shipments fall 2 percent to 3.5 million units for 15 percent of the market.
Acer, Lenovo, Sony and Asus all posted large double-digit gains during the fourth quarter. Acer's 29 percent increase was almost enough for the company to overtake Dell, and it pushed it far ahead of fourth place Toshiba.
Notebook PC Shipments