It's no secret that most electronics products are now Made in China, but new figures from China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) still have a mind-boggling scale. A table compiled by Taiwan's DigiTimes reveals that in January-October 2010, China made 792 million handsets, 153 million notebook PCs, almost 45 million desktop PCs, 112 million monitors, 95 million colour TV sets, and 75.5 million digital cameras.
Results showed good growth compared with the same period last year. The number of handsets was up by 56.3%, while notebooks (up 25.7%) and desktops (up 31.6%) also grew strongly. Perhaps surprisingly, the number of printers -- including multi-function models -- grew by 56.3% to 51.6 million units.
It's good to see some growth in the number of desktop PCs because I expect at least a few "pundits" have proclaimed that notebooks have killed desktops, or something like that. Of course, the balance has shifted dramatically, but China is still knocking out almost a million desktop PCs every week, and there is plenty of desktop manufacturing outside China. If you spec a Dell online in the UK, for example, it will be built in Poland (formerly in Ireland), not shipped from Beijing.
Desktop PCs perform better and generally last longer than laptops or, of course, mobile phones. You can buy a desktop PC for the price of a smartphone, and there's a good chance it will still be working in 5 years rather than 2 years.
Note: DigiTimes's table will shortly vanish behind its subscription wall.