SAN FRANCISCO—Unlike previous Windows operating systems launches, Microsoft's rollout of Windows 8 is not expected to generate a significant increase in DRAM shipments, according to market research firm IHS iSuppli.
Global DRAM bit shipments are expected to increase by 8 percent in the fourth quarter compared to the third quarter, according to IHS. Previous Windows rollouts have always generated double-digit increases in quarterly DRAM shipments, according to the firm.
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According to IHS, the lower than normal expected DRAM boost is partly due to the operating system's lean hardware requirement. More importantly, the arrival of Windows 8 is not likely to deliver a significant increase in PC shipments in the fourth quarter compared to the fourth quarter of 2011, IHS said.
"The release of a new Microsoft OS traditionally has been accompanied by more advanced system requirements, which then fuels growth in the DRAM market as more bits are shipped," said Clifford Leimbach, analyst for memory demand forecasting at IHS. "However, starting with Windows 7 and continuing with Windows 8, Microsoft has taken a leaner approach with its operating systems, maintaining the same DRAM requirements as before."
Meanwhile, Leimbach said, customers are continuing to shun new PC purchases, and Windows 8 is not expected to change the equation. IHS recently forecast that overall PC shipments would contract in 2012 for the first time in 11 years.