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HP and Acer lose share as global PC market softens

by Scott Bicheno on 14 October 2010, 12:34

Tags: Acer (TPE:2353), Hewlett Packard (NYSE:HPQ), Gartner (NYSE:IT)

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Cautious consumers

A quarter ago worldwide PC shipments exceeded the expectations of market researcher Gartner, with year-on-year growth of over 20 percent. But then, half way through Q3, Gartner reduced its forecast for the rest of this year.

The preliminary Q3 figures released by Gartner yesterday reveal shipment growth significantly under-shot even the reduced Q3 forecast of 12.7 percent, managing year-on-year growth of only 7.6 percent.

"The major growth inhibitor in the third quarter of 2010 was softness in consumer PC demand in the U.S. and Western Europe," said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner. "The third quarter historically is a strong consumer quarter, led by back-to-school sales. Consumer mobile PC demand, driven by low-priced notebooks, including mini-notebooks, slowed after very strong growth the past two years."

"Media tablet hype around devices such as the iPad has also affected consumer notebook growth by delaying some PC purchases, especially in the U.S. consumer market. Media tablets don't replace primary PCs, but they affect PC purchases in many ways. At this stage, hype around media tablets has led consumers and the channels to take a 'wait and see' approach to buying a new device."

So it looks like tablets really are impacting PC sales, both by directly supplanting netbooks and by complicating the decision-making process for consumers.

Among the vendors, the top two both saw market-share declines, while the rest of the pack caught up. Gartner puts some of this down to the weak consumer market, but surely that affected everyone. HP apparently also put a higher priority on profits (as opposed to volume) in Asia/Pac.


Preliminary Worldwide PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 3Q10 (Thousands of Units)


Company

3Q10 Shipments

3Q10 Market Share (%)

3Q09 Shipments

3Q09 Market Share (%)

3Q09-3Q10 Growth (%)

HP

15,431,749

17.5

15,513,420

18.9

-0.5

Acer

11,527,716

13.1

11,726,586

14.3

-1.7

Dell

10,816,474

12.2

9,908,099

12.1

9.2

Lenovo

9,140,778

10.4

6,871,379

8.4

33.0

Asus

4,793,186

5.4

3,911,263

4.8

22.5

Toshiba

4,695,600

5.3

4,014,945

4.9

17.0

Others

31,896,091

36.7

30,106,333

37.1

5.9

Total

88,301,595

100.0

82,052,026

100.0

7.6

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs.
Source: Gartner (October 2010)

 

As you can see in this second table, which focuses on the US, Acer's market-share fall owes a lot to the US market. Meanwhile Apple had a good quarter, and while these figures don't directly factor-in the iPad, Mac sales could be experiencing a halo effect from the popularity of the Apple tablet.

 

Preliminary U.S. PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 3Q10 (Thousands of Units)


Company

3Q10 Shipments

3Q10 Market Share (%)

3Q09 Shipments

3Q09 Market Share (%)

3Q09-3Q10 Growth (%)

HP

4,459,473

25.3

4,372,231

25.4

2.0

Dell

4,188,688

23.8

4,447,478

25.8

-5.8

Acer

1,848,511

10.5

2,338,816

13.6

-21.0

Apple

1,831,664

10.4

1,611,000

9.3

13.7

Toshiba

1,629,100

9.3

1,427,000

8.3

14.2

Others

3,650,807

20.7

3,036,573

17.6

20.2

Total

17,608,242

100.0

17,233,099

100.0

2.2

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs.
Source: Gartner (October 2010)