The release of Microsoft Vista hasn't generated much fresh demand for PCs, according to the analysts at In-Stat.

The worldwide PC market remains on target for 300 million unit sales in 2009, the research firm says.

"With the recent release of Vista, a short-term rise in PC demand is anticipated," says Ian Lao, In-Stat analyst. "System sales that had been muted waiting for systems pre-loaded with Vista rather than XP are expected to work through sales channels in the next two quarters. However, these sales represent an offset from last year rather than actual new demand creation."

The analysts observed that PC sales remain dominated by corporate buying cycles, and noted that memory manufacturers are most likely to draw benefit from the release of Vista.

But it's Apple's switch strategy that may see the most benefit: the analysts note that: "Average consumers wanting Vista are more likely to purchase an entire new system instead of a system upgrade."

Analysts - and Apple - hope that consumers looking to buy a new computer in order to support Vista may choose to buy a Mac, which supports both Mac OS X and Vista using Boot Camp.

The notion seems to be borne out. In its most recent quarter, Apple revealed that 50 per cent of Macs sold through its chain of retail stores are sold to users new to the Mac.