Global notebook shipments are expected to drop 13% on year in 2013 and decline further by 6.6% in 2014 to reach only 159 million units, as tablets continue to outshine notebooks.
Notebook's selling points for 2014 are expected to remain the same as those in 2013. Although touchscreen notebooks' proportion in total notebook shipments is expected to rise from 8.2% in 2013 to 16.5% in 2014, the growth is still far below vendors' expectation. Vendors will also release more 2-in-1 models in 2014, but due to factors such as concerns over Windows 8.1's user interface, touch panels' high costs and difficulties in reducing overall costs, 2-in-1 devices' proportion (without counting detachable models) in total notebook shipments will account for only less than 2% in 2014.
As for Chromebooks, Digitimes Research expects the devices to have a chance to reach three million units in 2014 and account for 5% of total notebook shipments in 2015. However, the devices' shipment growth will be contributed mostly by demand for replacements for conventional Windows- or Linux-based notebooks.
Digitimes Research estimates that the top-10 brand vendors' ranking in 2014 will stay similar to that of 2013. Hewlett-Packard (HP), Toshiba and Samsung Electronics will turn conservative about their notebook businesses. Apple will see a market share drop due to adjustments in products lines.
Acer and Asustek Computer, which are expected to suffer over 20% on-year shipment drops in 2013, are relying more on entry-level notebook models. Although the two vendors may have difficulties achieving shipment growths in 2014, their market shares are expected to stay flat thanks to orders released by HP, Toshiba and Samsung.