Research released on Friday shows that the PC market in Asia is seeing heavy growth this year, with shipments expected to rise 15 percent off healthy notebook gains.

Despite an easing in notebook growth from 46% in the previous quarter to 37% in 3Q06, notebooks continued to be a catalyst for PC sales in the third quarter, said Bryan Ma, Director of Asia/Pacific Personal Systems Research at IDC.

Nearly all the countries managed to beat expectations in this segment, with Malaysia in particular coming in very hot thanks to the aggressive student and SMB promotions there. And while political wild cards have appeared in Thailand and North Korea recently, IDC expects notebooks to continue to soar across the region in the upcoming quarters.

Lenovo, the market leader in Asia, cornered slightly more than one-fifth of the total PC market, with most of its growth coming from the Greater China region. Second place Hewlett Packard also continued expansion from strong notebook growth in the third quarter, IDC said.

Dell slipped a bit in share as it came off strong highs in selected countries in the previous quarter, but was still able to comfortably hold onto its third place position while still posting the strongest year-on-year growth out of the Top 5 vendors.