Intel has offered the first firm indications that the PC market slump may be coming to an end, raising its revenue forecasts following stronger-than-expected sales to business users.
In a statement to press and investors, Intel's financial division reported that its second-quarter revenue forecast is to be raised to $13.7 billion plus or minus $300 million for a peak of $14 billion, compared to its previous estimates of $13 billion plus or minus $500 million for a peak of $13.5 billion. That potential extra $500 million is mostly driven, the company has claiemd, by increased sales of PCs - the majority growth of which has been seen in the business sector, likely as a result of Microsoft finally putting Windows XP out to pasture and demanding its users upgrade to a more recent operating system.
The revision means that Intel is now expecting its revenue to grow over the quarter, rather than its previous prediction of remaining flat. Although the growth is small, it's a positive sign that the ongoing slump in the PC market which has seen sales volumes dropping for several years could have hit its lowest point - as predicted by Gartner
earlier this year.
The positive news for Intel and its investors comes as the company has lost its appeal against a record-breaking fine in Europe, however. Its five-year appeal against the European Union's whopping €1.06 billion fine following claims from rival AMD that Intel had used anti-competitive practices has failed, leaving the company on the hook for the whole value. The court found against the company in 2009, following evidence that it had used unfair subsidies and strong-arm tactics to prevent PC makers from using AMD chips, and to prevent any systems that were built with its competitors parts from being stocked at retailers.
Intel can still extend its appeal by taking the case before the Court of Justice of the European Union, with the company claiming it is currently 'evaluating the decision
' regarding a further appeal.