Acer and Dell have long battled for the No. 2 worldwide PC maker position. During the second quarter of 2010, the winner depends on who you ask-Gartner gave it to Acer, while IDC early estimates favor Dell.
The worldwide PC market is continuing to rebound, according to
second-quarter numbers released July 14 by research firms Gartner and
IDC. The bigger question is where Acer and Dell fit in the space.
Worldwide, corporate PC purchases helped fuel much of the growth,
taking some of the burden off of consumers, according to the two
analyst firms. Gartner estimates that the PC market rose 20.7 percent
over the second quarter of 2009, while IDC nudged the figure to 22.4
While Hewlett-Packard undisputedly led both rankings, shipping 14.8
million units by IDC's estimate and 14.5 million by IDC's, when it came
to the No. 2 position, conclusions varied. Acer and Dell have paced
neck-and-neck over several quarters. For the second quarter, Gartner
kept Acer at number two - estimating that it shipped 10.8 million units
for 13 percent market share, to Dell's 10.3 million, for 12.4 percent
of the market. IDC, however, reported shipments of 10.6 million units
for Dell, followed by Acer with 10.2 million units.
In the United States, the firms agreed, it was Dell that pulled
ahead. By IDC's estimate, the Texas computer maker shipped 4.4 million
units for 24 percent market share-creeping up on HP's first-place lead,
with 25.7 percent. Both estimated Acer to have shipped approximately 2
million units, for about an 11 percent market share.
By both accounts, Lenovo came in fourth place, with shipments of
approximately 8.3 million units. Garter ranked Asus in fifth
position-estimating that it shipped 4.3 million units, for 5.2 percent
market share, topping No. 6 Toshiba's 4.2 million units and 5.1 percent
share. IDC, however, tied the two for fifth place, with estimated
shipments of 4.34 million units going to Toshiba, an estimated 4.32
million units to Asus and a market share of 5.3 percent for each.
In the United States, the firms' figures again ran closer, with each
giving third-place to Acer, with shipments of approximately 2 million
units, and fourth-place to Apple, with 1.6 million units and
approximately 8.8 percent market share, per IDC (Gartner gave Apple a
more generous 1.7 million units, for a 9.8 percent share). Toshiba
finished fifth in the United States, with shipments of about 1.6
million units and 8.5 percent market share.
Enterprise refreshes of aging systems largely contributed to the quarter's growth, analysts at both firms agreed.
"The surge in consumer activity seen in the past two quarters has
started to slow as expected, while commercial replacements continue to
grow," Bob O'Donnell, an IDC vice president, said in a statement. "We
expect consumer activity to remain healthy, but gradually slow through
the end of the year, while commercial market growth will be more
stable, reflecting a planned replacement cycle over the next several
Sales of consumer-geared netbooks, or mini-notebooks, which helped
to buoy flagging PC sales in past quarters, still resulted in strong,
though slowing, numbers.
"Mini-notebook shipment growth still exceeded growth rates of the
overall mobile PC market, but mini-notebook growth slowed to the low 20
percent range compared with more than 70 percent in the last two
quarters," Gartner analyst Mikako Kitagawa said in a statement. "This
slowdown indicates that mini-notebooks are entering a mature growth
Kitagawa added that, in the U.S. market, the "surging popularity of
Apple's iPad temporarily cannibalized mini-notebooks, as well as
consumer notebook sales to some degree."
Asus, a major provider of netbooks, nonetheless performed strongly
on the global stage, posting year-on-year growth figures of 78.5
percent by Gartner's estimate and 83.6 percent by IDC's - by far the
strongest growth of any company.
Leader HP, however, posted year-on-year growth of 12.3 percent,
which well below the global market average. While average selling
prices declined during the quarter, according to Gartner's Kitagawa, HP
reportedly "did not participate in the aggressive pricing that was seen
Equity firm Raymond James, however, responding to the IDC figures,
reminded investors in a July 15 research note: "While IDC's reported 12
percent growth would suggest modest downside relative to our
projection, we remind investors that IDC's statistics are based on
calendar quarters, whereas HP's quarter ends a month later."
Michelle Maisto has been covering the enterprise mobility space for a decade, beginning with Knowledge Management, Field Force Automation and eCRM, and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Mobile Enterprise magazine. She earned an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and in her spare time obsesses about food. Her first book, The Gastronomy of Marriage, if forthcoming from Random House in September 2009.