Windows 7 is unlikely to have any significant effect on PC sales until the middle of next year at the earliest, say notebook makers.
Overall demand is not expected to pick up until the second half of 2010, when large enterprises and governments begin to expand their expense budgets, sources at Taiwanese notebook manufacturers told Digitimes, adding that it is these sectors that drive the market, rather than domestic buyers.
Although large-scale purchasers start planning for replacement hardware in the spring, this isn't converted into actual sales until well into the summer.
Compal is the main manufacturer of Dell's enterprise PCs, while Wistron will fulfil most of HP and Lenovo's enterprise PC orders next year. As a result, these two companies stand to gain the most from the predicted upturn when it finally arrives.
But the sources warn that, as Windows 7 won't create as big a shot in the arm as some are hoping, suppliers run the risk of over-optimistic sales predictions and could end up with warehouses full of unsold machines.