Chip sales bounce back in August

Global semiconductor sales showed a small jump on July figures thanks to energy-efficiency programs and the rise of netbooks.
Written by Sam Diaz, Inactive

The latest efforts to “Go Green,” along with the rise of netbook computers, helped boost global chip sales in August by 5 percent, compared to the previous month--a common way for companies to gauge their recession-recovery efforts.

On a year-over-year basis, sales were down 16 percent and, on a year-to-date basis, sales were down more than 21 percent, compared to year-to-date figures the same time last year, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association. The group also noted that the rate of decline in sales has slowed from the first six months of 2009, when sales declined by 25 percent year-over-year.

The group noted that incentive programs for energy-efficient products, such as cars to home appliances, has increased the demand for semiconductors that are key components of technology that reduce energy consumption. In addition, the rise of netbook computers h ave also created a new market segment that fills the gap between smartphones and notebook computers. In a statement, SIA President George Scalise said:

Personal computers have become especially attractive to consumers as average selling prices for PCs have declined by around 14 percent while memory content has increased by 25 percent during the past year. This translates into significantly more computing power at a significantly lower price… Notwithstanding the slow recovery of demand from the enterprise sector, we are encouraged that industry momentum has turned positive following the steepest downturn in more than a decade.

Regionally, the Americas saw the biggest month-to-month gain at 5.4 percent while it also saw the smallest year-over-year decline, at 2.3 percent. Europe, by contrast has the smallest month-to-month gain (3.9 percent) and the largest year-over-year decline, at 30.1 percent.

This article was first published as a blog post on ZDNet.

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