UPDATED: According to research firms, PC shipments in the third quarter continued their growth spurt with higher-than-expected figures, and HP narrowed top PC vendor Dell's lead.
An uptick in worldwide PC sales in the second quarter of this year continued into the third quarter, with vendors selling more than 42.5 million units, according to preliminary numbers released this week by Gartner Inc.
The Stamford, Conn., analyst firm said the number represented a 14.1 percent bump over the same quarter last year, and was fueled in large part by the consumer and notebook markets.
"Falling system prices, performance improvements and wireless awareness continue to bring notebooks to the attention of buyers, particularly consumers," Gartner analyst Charles Smulders said in a prepared statement.
Dell Inc., of Round Rock, Texas, retained the top spot overall, with 6,507 shipments in the third quarter for a 15.3 percent market share. Hewlett-Packard Co., of Palo Alto, Calif., was a close second with 6,445.1 shipments and 15.1 percent market share.
Rounding out the top five were IBM, with a 5.3 percent share, Fujitsu Ltd. and Fujitsu-Siemens at 3.7 percent and Toshiba Corp. at 3.1 percent.
The results of the quarter also showed that HP has closed the gap with Dell, according to Gartner. In the second quarter, HP trailed Dell by 400,000 units. In the third quarter, that difference was only 62,000 units.
Smulders said HP performed best in the United States, though it was growing well in other regions. He predicted a close race be-tween the two during the upcoming holiday season.
Dell also did well in all regions, while IBMthough it saw good results in Europe and Asiastruggled in the U.S. market.
Editors note: This story has been updated since its original posting to replace an Associated Press report with that of eWEEK staff.