We have been saying ever since they were announced that while the 9370s will sell in what would be enormous numbers for most companies, they may nevertheless not sell in the numbers that IBM needs – and now International Data Corp, Framingham, Massachusetts, has come to the same conclusion. The research outfit says that while sales of the 9370 will be strong, they will be insufficient to win back the business lost to DEC and other competititors – sales will go primarily to IBM’s existing customers, according to IDC vice-president David Moschella. Speaking at an investment conference organised by Goldman Sachs in New York, he forecast that while 1987 sales of the 9370 will total some $1,000m, fully half of that business would be at the expense of other IBM machines. IDC reckons that unit sales of mainframes fell to 2,350 in 1986 from 2,460 in 1985 and 2,500 in 1984, and sees the rate of sales of 3090s and 308Xs at the same 2,350 level for the next three years. At the low end of the market, IDC sees small business computer sales growing at 6% to 10% over the next three years, and of personal computers at 7% to 11%. Sales in foreign markets will be 3% to 5% higher than sales within the US, with South-East Asia outstanding.
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