Analyst: Apple to double market share by 2011

Apple has been on a roll in recent years, building on the momentum of the market-leading iPod and the release of the iPhone last year. Now it seems that momentum is translating into increased market share for its Macintosh computers.

In a recent report called “Key Predictions for IT Organizations and Users in 2008 and Beyond,” market research firm Gartner predicted Apple will double its U.S. and Western Europe computer market share.

While Gartner praises Apple for its software integration, analysts still place much of the responsibility for Apple’s rise at the feet of the rest of the industry.

“Apple’s gains in computer market share reflect as much on the failures of the rest of the industry as on Apple’s success,” Gartner analysts said in the report. “Apple is challenging its competitors with software integration that provides ease of use and flexibility; continuous and more frequent innovation in hardware and software; and an ecosystem that focuses on interoperability across multiple devices (such as iPod and iMac cross-selling).”

Gartner also predicts in its report that by 2012, 50 percent of traveling workers will leave their notebooks at home in favor of other devices. This could also be an important trend for Apple as the company solidifies its place in market with the iPhone over the coming years.

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