Apparently people are still buying a lot of PCs.
Sales of "old fashioned" computers are rebounding dramatically in big markets like the U.S., Japan and western Europe, according to a new forecast from research giant IDC. It's expecting PC sales in mature markets to grow 5.6 percent this year, the best showing since 2010 -- the year the iPad debuted.
It's a different story in developing countries, where PC sales are expected to fall 10.4 percent this year, bringing overall, worldwide sales down 3.7 percent. That's not quite a rebound, but better than the 6 percent drop the Framingham, Mass.-based firm previously forecast.
"Programs to reduce PC prices, such as Windows 8.1 with Bing, have helped to improve PC shipments in some segments," Jay Chou, IDC senior research analyst, said in a release.
"Coupled with a shift toward more mobile PCs, the market has seen a quickened pace of innovation and a focus on price points," Chou said. "Nevertheless, the prospects for significant PC growth in the long term remain tenuous, as users increasingly see PCs as only one of several computing devices."
Meanwhile, "direct competition from tablets seems to be waning," IDC Vice President Loren Loverde added in the release. He said PC demand could get a boost next year from the upcoming version of Microsoft's Windows 9 Threshold.