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Shuttle Computer, who is gradually withdrawing from the mainboard business to concentrate on its PC barebone business, did not meet its own PC barebone shipment estimations in 2004, according to Taiwanese press.

Shuttle Computer shipped 638 000 small form-factor computers in 2004, up 16% from about 550 thousand XPCs it shipped in 2003, according to a report from DigiTimes citing sources close to the company. In late 2003 the firm said it expected to sell approximately 750 thousand of its SFF systems in 2004 in total, but reiterated its guidance to 700 thousand units in mid-year.

The first Shuttle XPC emerged in 2001 and was considered as a rather exotic type of PCs. However, because of small form-factor, style, quiet operation and upgradeability, XPC cubes from Shuttle quickly became very popular among end-users, who require such peculiarities. Shuttle’s XPC shipments were between 550 and 600 thousand of units in 2003, a 120% to 140% growth from 2002’s 250 thousand of Shuttle SFF PCs. Even though the numbers for 2004 seem to be pleasing, the increase of the company’s barebone business – about 16% – seems to demonstrate signals of slowdown. Still, Shuttle seems to be the dominating player in the PC barebone business.

In addition to barebones intended for users who are able to install additional computer parts themselves along with OEMs, Shuttle also offers its build-to-order PCs for customers in the USA and Europe, indicating the firm’s serious intentions to become a system integrator rather than a just another component manufacturer. Shuttle offers configure-to-order system solutions in the range in price between $799 and $2999, depending on configuration. The personal computers from Shuttle include the company’s own LCD monitors.

Shuttle Computer officials did not comment on the news-story.

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