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TABLETS OUTPACING PCS AND NOTEBOOKS

Thailand is starting to step into the post-PC era, according to the information and communications technology market outlook for 2012 which will mark the first time when tablet sales will surpass those of desktop PCs and notebooks.



According to the outlook released by the National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (Nectec) together with the Software Industry Promotion Agency (Sipa), this year the tablet market in Thailand will sell 2.4 million units while desktop PC sales are expected to be only 1.2 million units and notebook sales will be 2.25 million units. The expected sales of 2.4 million units of tablets do not take into account the 900,000 tablets under the government's one tablet per child project.

The tablet market this year in Thailand will see a 212.5-per-cent leap from only 480,000 units last year. It is expected that the average price of a tablet will fall from Bt18,000 per unit to Bt14,000. Therefore, the total market value of tablets this year would increase to 143.1 per cent, a Bt23.7-billion increase from Bt8.64 billion last year.

Meanwhile, the desktop PC market this year will for the first time see a contraction, by 9.1 per cent. The total market will be about 1.2 million units, down from 1.32 million units last year. The notebook market, however, continues to see growth at 11.4 per cent. This year's sales of 2.25 million units will improve on last year's 2.02 million units and 1.89 million units in 2010.

Apart from tablets, the smart-phone market is a significant chunk of the post-PC era. This year, smart-phone sales are expected to increase 27.7 per cent while conventional handsets will contract 6.9 per cent. The value of the smart-phone market in 2012 is estimated to be about Bt37.19 billion. Along with the growth of smart phones, the mobile non-voice service is also showing strong growth of 34.2 per cent, while mobile voice service will grow at only 1.8 per cent. The total mobile service, including voice and non-voice, this year will be worth Bt176.63 billion, an 8.7-per-cent increase overall.

Consumer IT products and services in Thailand this year are expected to see heavy growth. Apart from tablets and smart phones as well as notebooks, external hard disk is another market expected to surge, at 31.3 per cent over last year, to Bt4.2 billion.

Internet is another growth area in the country's ICT market this year, with increase in corporate users and individual users of 9 per cent and 12.1 per cent respectively.

However, the overall ICT market in Thailand this year is expected to increase 11.2 per cent, worth about Bt581.571 billion. Within the ICT market, telecommunication takes the lion's share with 76.9 per cent, while the IT market is only 23.1 per cent.

The IT market value is expected to be Bt118.327 billion, an 18.7-per-cent increase from Bt153.549 billion last year.


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