Gartner has announced that more than 1 billion personal computers are in use worldwide, and the number should double by 2014 driven largely by emerging market sales.

"Mature markets such as the United States, Western Europe, and Japan currently account for 58 percent of the worlds installed PCs, but these markets only account for 15 percent of the worlds population," said George Shiffler, research director at Gartner. "There's a startling difference in per capita PC penetration between mature and emerging markets. Of course, much of this difference reflects the disparity in average living standards between mature and emerging markets. But, rapid economic development across emerging markets is not only narrowing the disparity in average living standards, it's closing the difference in per capita PC penetration between mature and emerging markets."

"We expect per capita PC penetration in emerging markets to double by 2013," added Mr. Shiffler. "Rapid penetration in emerging markets is being driven by the explosive expansion of broadband and wireless connectivity in these markets, the continuing fall in PC average selling prices (ASPs), and the general realization that PCs are an indispensable tool for advancement."

Apple has recently done very well in the United States, experiencing some of the highest growth rates in the industry.

International sales have typically consisted of 40-50% of Apple's revenue, and Apple specifically noted that they were experiencing marketshare growth in virtually all European and Asian countries during their 1Q 2008 conference call.

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