The Cutting Edge: Computing / Technology / Innovation : Software Sales Leap 67% on Rising Home Use

From Bloomberg Business News

Surging demand for entertainment and educational computer software for the home contributed to a 67% growth in unit sales of software in North America during the first quarter, a trade group reported Tuesday.

However, data collected by the Washington-based Software Publishers Assn. shows that dollar sales of software at the retail level rose by only 11.1% to $1.48 billion, as merchants cut their markups.

“We are seeing a new gold rush in the consumer software industry,” said David Tremblay, research director for the trade group, referring to software used in the home. “The rapid growth in the use of personal computers in American homes is creating millions of new customers for software.”

The quarterly survey of sales performance reflects several key trends among software buyers. Software sales for Macintosh computers made by Apple Computer Inc. rose 18.9% to $259 million, the biggest jump since the third quarter of 1992.


Software for the dominant Windows operating system from Microsoft Corp. increased 43.4% to $899 million. Sales of software for the older DOS operating system slid 36.4% to $303 million.

The popularity of products for Windows-based computers was visible in all of the consumer software categories.