IDC forecasts the global unit shipments for PC microprocessors to reach about 384 million units in 2013 in its report Worldwide PC Microprocessor 2012-2016 Forecast.
The latest forecast report from the research firm also shows that the global revenues for microprocessors designed for mobile PCs, desktop PCs, and PC servers will grow to US$40.7 billion this year.
Competition between the tablets and PC will intensify in 2013. Customers will get to choose from x86- and ARM-based mobile PCs with 13.3-inch or smaller screens and Windows 8 targeted at low power and productivity applications.
Businesses will also offer x86-based mobile PCs with 14-inch and larger screens targeted at high performance applications.
"Macroeconomic uncertainty has forced OEM and IT customers to reduce orders and focus on execution, and reduce expectations after the launch of Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system in late October," said Shane Rau, vice president for PC and server semiconductor and enabling technologies research at IDC. "Delays in PC purchases caused by Windows 8 and the encroachment of media tablets on low-end PCs have further cut into PC microprocessor demand growth."
Increase in popularity of ARM architecture
IDC expects an increase in popularity of ARM architecture and expects 3.2 percent of PC server processors to be based on it by 2016.
Right now the traditional x86 client PC microprocessors look to be in a defensive position against ARM processors in tablets and clamshell PCs.
However, the x86-based processors are scaling upwards and outwards in terms of performance. Also, the application of these processors reaches into high-end computing applications.
The IDC report, Worldwide PC Microprocessor 2012-2016 Forecast, also shows that the global PC microprocessor market revenue will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 3.4 percent for the period 2011 through 2016.
"For vendors of microprocessors and other PC technologies, the future belongs to those who can best execute on a vision of what computing ultimately should be and how users assess the value to them," added Rau.
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