Apple, HP, Dell notebooks could get a spring boost

A slow winter season for sales could see a turnaround come the warmer weather.

By Benzinga Mar 4, 2013 5:17PM
By Louis Bedigian

It seems that Apple (AAPL) may have reduced the price of its MacBook a bit prematurely. While notebook sales have been stagnant during the winter months, they could pick up very soon.


According to DigiTimes, most of the major notebook vendors will ship new models in the second quarter. As a result, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) is expected to enjoy an on-quarter shipment increase of 30%. Apple will rise by 26%, while Dell (DELL) will increase its on-quarter shipments by 19%.


Acer and Lenovo are expected to increase their shipments as well, but Toshiba leads the pack with an anticipated 42% increase, followed by Asus at 41%.


The increases are being attributed to Intel's (INTC) Haswell processor, which is expected to appear in new notebooks this spring.


While none of the leading manufacturers have said much about their rumored Haswell-based machines, there have been a few leaks. One came from German manufacturer DevilTech. According to Bit-Tech, the company is building multiple Haswell-based notebooks, including one with a 3GHz powerhouse that can reach 3.9GHz with Turbo Boost.


Monster, a Turkish gaming notebook manufacturer that is unrelated to Monster Inc. (the cable manufacturer), is also reportedly working on four Haswell-based machines.


Apple tweaked some of the MacBook Pro models when it reduced the price of the 13-inch Retina Display edition, so the company may not be ready to release another upgrade. However, the MacBook Air has not been updated since last summer, making it the perfect candidate for a Haswell processor.


Despite the positive rumor, shares of Apple have continued to tumble this week, dropping more than one percent on Monday. Hewlett-Packard is experiencing a similar decline, though it should not be enough to significantly reduce its year-to-date gains of more than 34%. Dell, which has climbed more than 31% this year, is down less than one percent.


Hewlett-Packard, which reclaimed the top spot as the world's largest PC manufacturer last fall, could relinquish that title to Lenovo -- at least in the area of laptop production. 

According to the aforementioned DigiTimes report, Lenovo is expected to ship more notebooks than any other brand vendor this year.


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