Apple will overtake Microsoft in device shipments this year, expects research firm Gartner. The research outfit has seen a continuing trend of fewer Windows devices shipped year on year. Meanwhile it is more positive about the prospects of the combined shipments of Apple iOS and Mac OSX device,s and thinks they will overtake Windows this year. If this plays out, 2017's device shipments tally could mark a major milestone for Apple.
Gartner has been monitoring sales of computers, 2-in-1s, tablets, and phones and observed the Microsoft Windows dominant OS position weaken over several years. Meanwhile Apple's OSes which it exclusively distributes with its own hardware have grown steadily in prominence and peaked in 2015. The latest full recorded year, 2016, wasn't such a great one for Windows or Apple devices. Going forward, as Microsoft device shipments falter and flatten, iOS and Mac OS X will again make gains, reckon the Gartner analysts.
A big part of the headlining prediction relies upon performance of the competing camps this year. I am not sure why Gartner analysts are more positive on Apple's potential this year than in 2016. Apple is so secretive about what is up its sleeves and its recent performance, forecasts, and production cut disappointed investors.
Looking at Windows devices, Microsoft's Windows Phones effort looks now to be just for niche business appeal so units shipped aren't going to be very large in 2017. However there are positive things to look forward to in 2017; there is the Windows 10 Creators Update and new associated hardware, new 'Cellular PCs' from collaboration with Qualcomm and other hardware partners, new AMD Ryzen PCs, and towards the end of 2017 we will see Intel 10nm Cannon Lake devices. Overall I wouldn't bet my shirt on Gartner's predictions for 2017.