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Desktop PC Ownership Stagnates, Poll Says

Desktop PC ownership was stagnant for the first time in 2005, but an increase in laptop and notebook sales appears to be closing the digital divide, according to a recent study of Internet trends.

Low-cost, high-speed and wireless Internet service seem to be driving laptop and notebook sales worldwide, and that could be closing the digital divide, according to a study released Monday by Ipsos Insight researchers.

In November and December 2005, researchers polled a random group of 6,544 adults urban Brazil, China, India, Mexico and Russia, as well as broader areas in Canada, France, Germany, Japan, South Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Global PC ownership increased 8 percentage points in 2005, while desktop PC ownership stagnated for the first time, according to The Face of The Web. Someone owned a notebook or tablet PC in 34 percent of households around the world by the end of 2005, compared to 20 percent in 2003. During that same period, desktop PC ownership remained at 60 percent.

The figures may herald a "changing of the guard" in overall PC ownership and sales, according to Ipsos.

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