Throw out your notebooks: Gartner says they’re old hat. The research firm has significantly downgraded its sales growth forecast for 2011 and 2012, notching off almost six points to predict a 10.5-percent rise this year and 13.6-percent (down from 14.8-percent) the next. According to Gartner analyst Ranjit Atwal, tablets are a main cause of the reduced estimates as the fashionable slates leave notebooks unloved.
That, it’s suggested, leaves more people sticking with their existing notebooks rather than upgrading, and coupled with reduced demand for PCs in previously high-growth markets like China, the segment as a whole looks depressed. Meanwhile, high-profile gadgets like the iPad 2 and the iPhone 4 capture not only mind-share but, with their rapidly increasing feature-sets, convince users that what once required a notebook or netbook to do, can now often be done on a tablet or smartphone.