Earlier today, Gartner analyst George Shiffler lowered its forecast for PC sales in 2011 and 2012, as devices such as the iPad are increasingly blurring the line between traditional computers, and mobile devices. Everything’s not lost for PC makers though, as PC shipments will still grow in 2011, albeit at a slower pace than initially expected, as Gartner lowered its growth forecast by about a third, from almost 16 percent, to a little over 10 percent. The updated forecast is the direct result of yesterday’s iPad 2 announcement, as according to the analyst, tablets are quickly morphing into full-fledged computers, able to provide similar or better capabilities, in a much smaller – and cheaper – package.
We expect growing consumer enthusiasm for mobile PC alternatives, such as the iPad and other media tablets, to dramatically slow home mobile PC sales, especially in mature markets. […] We now believe that consumers are not only likely to forgo additional mobile PC buys but are also likely to extend the lifetimes of the mobile PCs they retain as they adopt media tablets and other mobile PC alternatives as their primary mobile deviceAs Gartner puts it, tablets and smartphones are ‘post-PC’ products, and as their performance and capabilities increase, the devices are poised to take more and more market share away from traditional PCs, and to a lesser extent, laptops and netbooks.