The booming multimedia desktop PC market had another explosive year in 1995, particularly in the Pacific Rim countries, where it quadrupled its growth.
According to a report released this week by market researcher Dataquest, the multimedia desktop market grew from 10.3 million units in 1994 to more than 20.8 million units in 1995, fueled largely by growth in the Pacific Rim and Europe.
Asian markets grew by 391%, a rate that could help integrate multimedia at a much higher rate in the Asian PC markets than in the US, where the growth was a much more modest 35% or even Europe, a region that enjoyed a healthy 144% growth.
Multimedia PCs have held at a 42% average of all PCs sold in the US for the past six quarters, but multimedia desktop PCs in the Asian markets are already at greater than 50% of PCs sold, according to Dataquest.
Dataquest defines a multimedia-capable PC as having a Motorola 68020, Intel 386, PowerPC or better processor running at a clock speed of at least 25 MHz; 5Mb of RAM; 80Mb or more of disk drive storage; a minimum of 8-bit sound; and the ability to support 8-bit monochrome or colour graphics. A complete multimedia system also includes a CD-ROM drive.
"The Asian markets really embraced the multimedia PC in 1995," says Bruce Ryon, director and principal analyst of Dataquest's multimedia worldwide programme.
Apple was the leading multimedia PC vendor in the world in 1995, outselling its closest competitor, Packard Bell by almost 1 million units worldwide.
Dataquest's report also says that because of the huge growth by non-US based vendors into their own regions, all US-based multimedia PC vendors lost worldwide market share, with Packard Bell and Apple showing the largest decline.
Dataquest, based in San Jose, California, can be reached on the World Wide Web at http://www.dataquest.com.