PHOTO - Ng Juan Jin, market analyst for Client Devices Research at IDC Asia/Pacific.
A substantially lower phase shipment volume of the national regulator Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission's (MCMC) 1Million Netbooks programme is one of the causes behind a quarter on quarter drop of 19 percent of consumer PC shipments in the country during the second quarter of 2012, according to analyst firm IDC's Asia/Pacific Quarterly PC Tracker.
The second quarter Malaysia PC market registered a sharp sequential decline of 19 percent to 893,000 units, as MCMC delivered more than 300,000 units of the 1Million Netbooks programme in the previous quarter, said IDC Asia/Pacific market analyst for client devices research, Ng Juan Jin.
"Retail activity was exceptionally low as well as end-user spending waned and consumer notebooks faced intense competition from tablet and smartphone devices for wallet share," said Ng.
He said that apart from the MCMC mininotebook project shipments, the retail consumer segment dropped eight percent quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) in quarter two of 2012 as consumers prioritised household necessities over IT spending.
"On the supply side, channels adopted a 'just-in-time' approach to bringing in stocks in this uncertain climate," said Ng. "Learning from past experiences, this ensured they were not left holding large amounts of aging inventory going into quarter three.."
He said that after months of aggressive MNC [multinational company] price wars, marketing overkill and increasingly ineffective PC fairs, consumers have become apathetic, leading to slower movement of units out of channels.
The commercial segment remained flat quarter on quarter (QoQ) in the second quarter, 2012, registering a total of 194,000 units shipped. "While this quarter's sluggish movement in the commercial space could be attributed to seasonality where enterprises and the public sector hold off on PC purchases, the outlook for the second half of 2012 does not look promising as well. Bids for large government projects that are usually observed in quarter two have been few and far between this year. On the enterprise side, there is little optimism given the bleak worldwide economy which in turn affects IT spending of vendors' enterprise customers."
Ng said that IDC has reduced its upcoming quarter three 2012 PC forecast to single digit growth as feedback from MNCs indicate yet another slow quarter for the retail market. This is partially because of the Windows 8 effect. "It is likely that channels will hold off on bringing in large amounts of shipments in anticipation of the Windows 8 launch. But once the embargo on Windows 8 models is lifted on 26 October, channels should resume regular loading levels to cater to pent-up demand from the consumer segment."
On the commercial side, shipments are expected to pick up marginally in the second half of 2012 as Central Contract Education shipments from the public sector begin to roll out in quarter three.
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