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PC market shrinks by 3.2% in Q1

by Scott Bicheno on 14 April 2011, 11:05

Tags: IDC, Gartner (NYSE:IT)

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qa5k3

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Challenges aplenty

Market researcher IDC forecast growth of 1.5 percent for the global PC market in Q1 2011, but the figure ended up being -3.2 percent.

Getting it wrong by almost five percentage points must be pretty embarrassing for IDC, but it has pointed to a number of exceptional events that it couldn't have foreseen as mitigation, including the Japan earthquake and the situation in many Middle Eastern countries. On top of that there was a spike in many commodity prices and Europe continued to wrestle with its debt.

IDC will be consoled by the fact that its big rival - Gartner - didn't fare much better, having forecasted growth of thee percent but recording -1.1 percent. The two companies use different methodologies to compile their stats.

Market-specific factors focus primarily on consumer caution, which is manifesting itself in a focus on necessary replacements rather than secondary devices. This is resulting in sales of netbooks being especially hard hit, with either sales or at least awareness of tablets surely a factor.

"While the consequences of events in the Middle East and Japan remain unclear, these will surely be factors that will influence short term market performance for 2011," said Jay Chou of IDC. "Long-term success will depend on hardware manufacturers being able to articulate a message that is beyond simple hardware specifications.

"'Good-enough computing' has become a firm reality, exemplified first by Mini Notebooks and now Media Tablets. Macroeconomic forces can explain some of the ebb and flow of the PC business, but the real question PC vendors have to think hard about is how to enable a compelling user experience that can justify spending on the added horsepower."

"Weak demand for consumer PCs was the biggest inhibitor of growth," said Mikako Kitagawa of Gartner. "Low prices for consumer PCs, which had long stimulated growth, no longer attracted buyers. Instead, consumers turned their attention to media tablets and other consumer electronics. With the launch of the iPad 2 in February, more consumers either switched to buying an alternative device, or simply held back from buying PCs."

Pretty much all global PC growth came from the Asia/Pacific region, especially as that excludes Japan, which was already expected to contract sharply before the earthquake. That's reflected in the vendor stats, with Acer most exposed in EMEA - the worst region - and Lenovo the best represented in Asia/Pac.


Top 5 Vendors, Worldwide PC Shipments, First Quarter 2011 (Preliminary) (Units Shipments are in thousands)

Rank

Vendor

1Q11

Shipments

Market

Share

1Q10

Shipments

Market

Share

1Q11/1Q10

Growth








1

HP

15,191

18.9%

15,624

18.8%

-2.8%

2

Dell

10,284

12.8%

10,469

12.6%

-1.8%

3

Acer Group

9,039

11.2%

10,733

12.9%

-15.8%

4

Lenovo

8,172

10.1%

7,028

8.4%

16.3%

5

Toshiba

4,809

6.0%

4,634

5.6%

3.8%









Others

33,062

41.0%

34,712

41.7%

-4.8%









All Vendors

80,557

100.0%

83,200

100.0%

-3.2%

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, April 13, 2011



Preliminary Worldwide PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 1Q11 (Units)


Company

1Q11 Shipments

1Q11 Market Share (%)

1Q10 Shipments

1Q11 Market Share (%)

1Q11-1Q10 Growth (%)

HP

14,797,299

17.6

15,312,468

18.0

-3.4

Acer Group

10,893,793

12.9

12,412,859

14.6

-12.2

Dell

9,984,370

11.9

10,210,766

12.0

-2.2

Lenovo

8,137,904

9.7

6,976,683

8.2

16.6

Toshiba

4,821,600

5.7

4,580,746

5.4

5.3

Others

35,615,953

42.3

35,686,995

41.9

-0.2

Total

84,250,918

100.0

85,180,518

100.0

-1.1

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs, mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks but not media tablet such as the iPad.
Source: Gartner (April 2011)


Preliminary EMEA PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 1Q11 (Thousands of Units)

 

Company

1Q11 Shipments

1Q11 Market Share (%)

1Q10 Shipments

1Q10 Market Share (%)

1Q11-1Q10 Growth (%)

Hewlett-Packard

5,019

19.2

5,532

20.6

-9.3

Acer Group

4,939

18.9

5,557

20.7

-11.1

Dell

2,318

8.9

2,500

9.3

-7.3

ASUS

1,950

7.5

2,186

8.1

-10.8

Lenovo

1,325

5.1

1,236

4.6

7.2

Others

10,567

40.5

9,856

36.7

7.2

Total

26,119

100.0

26,867

100.0

-2.8

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs, mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks but not media tablet such as the iPad.
Source: Gartner (April 2011)



HEXUS Forums :: 3 Comments

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Could be a simple fact people just can't afford to buy new PC's all the time.

Considering the generation of latest consoles lasts around 4-5 years, this is much more tempting for the average household as a gaming system.

PC's haven't really changed much in 3/4 years except for games. I have a Athlon 2500+ runinng windows 7 just fine and does everything the kids need. Think consumers don't have much spare capital and added to the fact that little is to be gained for the average Joe in a new PC over one that is a few years old. Little point spendind money on something new that does the same as something old.
I'd imagine a good reason for the shrinkage is down to big businesses not wanting to upgrade their machines during an economic downturn, plus the reduction in new hires meaning less machines are needed for new members of staff.
@ Brewswer
@ Lucio

I concur with both ideas. But there is another. The PC I built 3 years ago, or bought 2 years ago, is still more powerful than I will ever need. There is nothing I need to do that XP does not already do. Same at work. There is no trace of $MEGACORP migrating away from XP for many years to come. They still sell embedded products based on it. too.

There is no need to upgrade regularly any more. I don't buy an vacuum cleaner till the old one breaks, we are at that stage with the computer now.

The hardware manufacturers have stopped innovating, and in fact seem to be largely dissapearing. Extra portability or convenience seems to have been taken care of with the netbooks, the phones, and the ipad. There really is no need to buy anything else.

In my personal case, too, I paid 70 quid for this copy of XP. A copy of W7 is going to cost me over 140 quid. That's a lot of sales resistance to overcome, especially as what I have is working perfectly well. I know how annoyed I will be when I build a new machine and M$ won't let me register my copy of XP on it.