Microsoft’s latest OS release Windows 8 failed to impact upon the worsening picture for desktop PC and notebooks.

Over the Christmas period sales of PCs and notebooks fell by 4.3% as consumer chose to instead invest in tablets and smartphones. Worldwide PC sales slumped to 90 million units in the last quarter of 2012 with some of the blame credited towards the weak global economy. Windows 8 was released in October with many PC manufacturers hoping it would revitalise the PC  market but failed to herald the type of hype associated with the latest releases of Apple iOS software and Google’s Android.

Many industry experts predicted that Windows 8 would not help PC sales especially considering that the new interface and features are firmly designed for touch capable devices. With Microsoft shifting it’s focus to the smartphone and tablet market does this mean the desktop is being left behind?

“Tablets have dramatically changed the device landscape for PCs, not so much by ‘cannibalizing’ PC sales, but by causing PC users to shift consumption to tablets rather than replacing older PCs,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner.

“Whereas as once we imagined a world in which individual users would have both a PC and a tablet as personal devices, we increasingly suspect that most individuals will shift consumption activity to a personal tablet, and perform creative and administrative tasks on a shared PC.”

Microsoft’s Surface also looks to have not performed well over Christmas with research A.X. Ian finding that only 36 people tweeted about wanting a tablet on Christmas Eve while 1,795 people tweeted about getting a new iPad.