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Context: Wind down of XP support boosts PC sales

Simon Quicke

The demise of support for Windows XP has had a positive impact on PC sales as customers across Europe take steps to ensure they are using an operating system that continues to get support.

The latest figures from Context, which gets its data from European distributors, indicates that desktop PC sales through the channel in January were up by 13% year-on-year with XP replacement a major factor in the annual improvement.

In the business market desktop units grew by 17.3% producing a consolidated growth figure of 6.6% in a market that has been generally declining over the last few years. In the UK the growth year-on-year of desktop in distribution hit 30% and the number of business targeted PCs also improved by 38.5%.

Context identified improving demand from some European countries that had been in a weaker position at the start of last year as well as some general desktop refreshes as other factors that were driving PC growth.

One of the major problems for those numerous users that are still using Windows XP is the prospect of them becoming more exposed to security problems as hackers target a much more vulnerable platform.

“The end of XP support across the huge installed base of XP across businesses will present a major security challenge for these companies”, said Alex Mesguich, VP of enterprise research at Context.

‘’Overall, the end of XP support could have a triple-whammy effect. For Microsoft, the unknown consequences could be opening a can of worms for them. Businesses are annoyed at the forced transition, and security vendors will be having to process and patch an increased flow of vulnerability issues," he added.


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