NEW YORK (AP) -- Research firm International Data Corp. expects sales of personal computers to grow 4.2 percent this year, down from a previous forecast of 7.1 percent.
The latest projection comes after IDC's tally showed PC sales dropped by 1.1 percent in the first quarter compared to last year.
The company says the slow economic recovery, competition from smartphones and tablets and the fact that most households in the developed world already have PCs are holding back sales.
Small laptops known as "netbooks" fueled growth in PC sales in the last few years, but IDC notes that their popularity has waned as regular laptops have grown more competitive, and tablets like the iPad have emerged.
IDC still expects PC sales to grow 10 percent to 11 percent per year in 2012 to 2015.