The ever-growing number of low-cost, ultraportable notebooks helped the worldwide PC market grow by 15 percent in the third quarter of 2008, but those numbers also reflected the growing impact of the financial crisis on the market. HP and Dell remained the two top suppliers of desktops and notebooks, while Acer and Apple also posted strong PC shipment numbers.
The growing presence of low-cost notebooks, such as the Asus
Eee PC and the Dell
Inspiron Mini 9,
helped the worldwide PC market grow by double digits in
the third quarter of 2008, but the
growing financial crisis in the United States
is continuing to have an
impact, according to IDC.
For the third quarter, worldwide PC shipments increased 15.8
percent compared to a year ago, but growth was slower than IDC
analysts first predicted. Total desktop and notebook shipments for the third
quarter topped 80 million units. Hewlett-Packard
dominated all other vendors when it came to worldwide shipments, but Dell
still retained the No. 1 spot in the United
States. Acer and Apple also posted strong
While low-cost, ultraportable laptops helped increase
overall shipments during the quarter, the stains on the U.S.
economy meant that many consumers and commercial operations held off spending on new
desktops and notebooks. Those results slowed down the market and brought down IDC's
"The commercial segment has been constrained due to tight IT
budgets, while back-to-school spending helped somewhat in maintaining
momentum," Doug Bell, an analyst with IDC,
wrote in the report. "IDC expects the
ongoing economic woes in the U.S.
to further impact consumer and commercial PC spending during the holiday
IDC released its latest
results on Oct. 15. The day before, Gartner
released its own figures that showed the PC market grew 15 percent during the
The Gartner results also reflected the growing impact of low-cost
"In EMEA [Europe, the Middle East and Africa], we saw these
notebooks driving a little bit of volume and also pulling down ASPs [average
selling prices] a little bit, so the real question is 'is this sustainable?'" said
Leslie Fiering, an analyst with Gartner.
In the worldwide market, HP maintained its dominance and
shipped 15 million PCs during the third-quarter of 2008, an increase of
15 percent from a year ago. Dell finished second with 11.3 million
an increase of 11.4 percent. Acer, which has taken advantage of both
emerging and matures markets, with a mixture of low-cost and midrange
saw its shipments increase 86 percent for a total of 10 million units.
Lenovo was fourth with nearly six million PCs shipped during
the quarter, while Toshiba shipped 3.7 million desktops and notebooks and
In the United States,
Dell shipped 5.3 million PCs, while HP shipped 4.6 million. Apple,
which just introduced new Macs this week
, increased its shipments by 32
percent for a total of 1.7 million units. Apple controlled nearly 10 percent of
the U.S. market
during the quarter.
Acer also posted solid number in the United
States and the Taiwanese company increased
shipments by 112 percent for a total of 1.5 million units during the third
quarter. Toshiba ranked fifth and shipped about 978,000 PCs. Total PC shipments
in the United States
for the third quarter topped 18 million units.