This is being written on a Netbook which, as it happens, was built in China. It would be a fair estimate to say that more than half the news stories being written by journalists are on what could be defined as a Netbook. Although that definition is a bit iffy and somewhat elastic. Many, most?, Netbooks are made in China and all make extensive use of components made in China.
No one knows why these machines have surged in popularity so that they dominate the market. This writer’s guess is that price has much to do with it. Or maybe it’s just because people don’t need computers for much more than Net access these days. Or perhaps we are all decluttering our lives which is the writer’s main reason. But the popularity of netbook computers keeps growing.
In the second quarter, netbooks accounted for 22.5% of all portable computer shipments worldwide, according to market forecaster DisplaySearch. That is up from 5.6% a year ago, and 17.8% in the first quarter of 2009.
At this growth rate, netbooks will soon rival larger notebooks in sales.
Netbooks, or mini-notes as DisplaySearch calls them, outgrew larger notebook PCs by nearly 2 to 1. As a market segment it grew 40% quarter over quarter, compared to 22% for larger notebooks. Of course, since netbooks are so much cheaper, the growth in revenues is not proportional.
TechCrunch reports Netbooks are taking the most share in Europe, where they had 32.9% share in the second quarter, followed by North America (26.6%), and China (18.8%). In North America, shipments are getting a boost because broadband providers are adding them as incentives for people who sign up for two-year plans.