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Acer may have passed Dell in netbook shipments in Q1, but supply chain checks indicate the PC maker is pulling back on manufacturing orders with ODMs.

That could spell troubling news for netbooks in Q2. Already an IDC
report earlier this week indicated that the computer processors behind
netbooks — Intel Atom — saw shipments drop by 33 percent in Q1, indicating the supply chain may have filled itself with chip inventory for the mini-notebooks.

Acer is cutting back on PC orders with ODMs, according to FBR Research,
which confirmed the trend with its own checks of the supply chain
channel, and because of that the firm is revising some of its Q2
estimates for PC builds.

For Q2, FBR research is now expecting notebook builds to grow 11
percent quarter over quarter, compared to the 14 percent the firm
previously had forecast. Desktop shipments are expected to decline 10
percent quarter over quarter compared to the 2 percent decline the
company previously had forecast.

"These negative revisions are due to continued softening demand in
Europe, slowing demand momentum for netbooks following a possible Q2
channel fill of new models and some delayed projects on low-voltage
notebook models," says FBR Research in a brief report about the
changing trend. "These checks represent a turn in near-term positive
momentum in the PC sector where we had three positive build revisions
in a row, likely giving investors an excuse to sell chip stocks in an
effort to protect recent gains."

Nearly 6 million netbooks shipped in Q1, raising their share within the
notebook PC market to close to 20 percent, according to market research
firm DisplaySearch.