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Netbooks missing sales targets

Chicago (IL) – News that netbook sales were not as strong as expected has been somewhat anticipated, at least since Intel’s Q1 announcement that Atom processor shipments declined during the first three months of the year. Now we hear that three leading netbook manufacturers see Q1 netbook sales fall short of expectations as well.

Driving netbook sales is one of the key strategies of PC hardware vendors to stabilize overall unit sales and, to a certain degree, revenues. But it appears that the economic downturn has hit this segment in the first quarter as well. Digitimes reports that Acer, Asus and MSI were not able to meet their sales targets for the period.

From Digitimes: “Although Acer is estimated to have shipped two million Aspire One netbooks in the first quarter, the sources said that sales in the channel were lower. Meanwhile, Asustek’s Eee PC sales were only 900,000 units, lower than the expected one million units, while MSI had sales of 200,000 Wind series netbooks, the sources revealed.”

Acer leads global netbook sales with a market share that is believed to have topped the 40% mark in Q1. Asus follows with slightly less than 30%. Acer hopes to sell somewhere between 12 and 13 million netbooks this year, while Asus’ goal is in the 7 million neighborhood. The total 2009 market volume is estimated at about 20 to 30 million netbooks.