India’s top three computer vendors by units sold—Hewlett Packard India, HCL Infosystems and Lenovo India—strengthened their share of the market by a fifth as a record number of consumers in the fast-growing economy bought notebook and desktop computers.
Sales of personal computers in India, including desktop and notebook computers, touched 5.4 million in 2006, growing 25% from 4.3 million the previous year, technology market researcher International Data Corporation (IDC) India said. Notebook computer shipments were just short of a million—9,76,000—more than doubling over the 2005 figure. The demand was driven by prices of notebook computers dropping below the Rs45,000-mark.
Desktop computer sales were 4.4 million, a 15% growth. HP strengthened its market share by nearly a quarter, reporting a 21% of the 2006 sales, equivalent to around 1.1 million computers. Second was HCL Infosystems that improved its market share by a percentage point to 14% (around 750,000 units). Lenovo sold 9%, around 4.8 lakh units, of the computers sold in 2006, up from 7% in 2005.
In notebook computers, HP had a 38%—over 370,000 units —share of the market, followed by Lenovo at 17% (nearly 166,000) and Toshiba at 10% (97,600).
HP India attributed its increase in sales to the growth in the IT-enabled services sector, the booming education sector which is seeing more professional colleges using laptops, as well as increased government spending. “Our growth in sales is a part of the larger India growth plan. Besides, we are investing heavily in brand-building, which has greatly added to sales,” said Ravi Swaminathan, president, Personal Systems Group, HP India.
Last year, barring the top three computer vendors (HP, HCL and Lenovo), other vendors included Dell, Acer, LG, PCS, Sahara Computers, Wipro and Zenith. One of the top 10 players in 2005, Vintron was replaced by Sahara Computers in 2006. Demand for notebook computers came from the home segment, students, executives whose job involves extensive travelling and increased buying from the small and medium businesses.
Desktops buying was driven by telecom, banking and financial services, retail and call centre industries, besides electronic governance initiatives undertaken by the Centre and state administrations.
In January, trade body Manufacturers’ Association of Information Technology projected notebook computer sales would top the one million-mark by March, 2007. Most Indian companies and associations report their financial year April to March. Analysts see strong growth in 2007 too. Research firm Gartner predicts computer sales to grow to 9.8 million in the year to December 2007, with notebook computers leading demand. “The total PC market in 2007 will grow by 25.4%, with the desktop market growth projected at 13% and the notebook market at 63%,” Diptarup Chakraborti, principal analyst at Gartner, predicted.