Gartner: PC market continues to decline

Gartner: PC market continues to decline

According to new data from Gartner, worldwide PC shipments declined 4.3 percent during Q4 and 4.5 percent over the year.

"Just when demand in the PC market started seeing positive results, a shortage of CPUs created supply chain issues". The fourth quarter is typically oriented toward consumer promotions that help drive the industry's biggest quarter of the year, but the confluence of events in 2018 led to the lowest sequential growth for a holiday quarter since the fourth quarter of 2012.

PC shipments in Emea totalled 20.9 million units in the fourth quarter of 2018, a 3.8% decline year over year. Kitagawa put this down to two factors: economic uncertainty among small to medium businesses and weak holiday purchases.

Mikako Kitagawa, senior principal analyst at Gartner, believes the sluggish sales are a product of political and economic uncertainties around the world, combined with an ongoing CPU shortage. While Lenovo's shipments in the quarter grew 5.9 percent, HP managed to grab the No. 2 spot with 22.4 percent market share despite shipping 15.3 million PCs, a 4.4 percent decline.

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The top three vendors of PCs - Lenovo, HP, and Dell - increased their share of the global PC market, accounting for 63 percent of PC shipments in Q4 2018, up from 59 percent at the same time previous year.

A major factor for Lenovo's share gain was credited to a joint venture with Fujitsu formed in May 2018. The results slightly outperformed the forecast, which called for a decline of 4.7%, but also produced the largest year-on-year decline since the third quarter of 2016 (3Q16) and capped the full year at a almost flat rate of -0.4%.

"The market stabilisation in 2018 was attributed to consistent business PC growth, driven by Windows 10 upgrade". Lenovo also had a strong quarter in the US. The Asia/Pacific PC market slid 4.6 percent to 24.2 million, mainly on the back of uncertainties around U.S. Dell, in contrast, had the strongest year-over-year growth among the top five OEMs with a 1.6 percent increase in quarterly shipments.

Apple remained in the fourth position with market share of 7.2 percent and growth of -3.8 percent. Moreover, Acer took fifth place with a market share of 6.7 percent and a year-over-year decline of 8.5 percent.

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