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HP Notebooks At Top

PALO ALTO, CALIF. – For the first time Hewlett-Packard was the number one seller of notebook computers in the U.S. retail market for October, according to NPD Techworld.

Bob Nitzberg, HP’s marketing manager for Pavilion notebooks, said the company garnered 28 percent of the market, nudging out a surging Sony that had 26 percent and badly beating long-time number one seller Compaq, which held onto a 20 percent share. Nitzberg doubted HP would be able to retain the number one position for November. The company sold so many notebooks during October and September its supply levels are now probably too low to sustain sales that would give HP the top spot again, he said.

“Having the number one spot is important to us and we are looking forward to when we can sustain it,” Nitzberg said.

He pointed to the release of the Windows XP operating system as one reason for HP’s rise and did not think the proposed merger between HP and Compaq had an impact on Compaq’s decline for October. “I don’t think the merger impacts the consumer space. There the interest is in price and brand name,” he said, adding that enterprise level notebook purchases might be affected by HP’s controversial take over bid of Compaq.