HP Beats Dell for Number 1 PC Spot in the U.S.: IDC

IDC released PC shipments numbers for the first quarter of 2009 and showed Hewlett-Packard had pulled ahead of Dell in both the U.S. market and worldwide. Dell came in second place in both rankings, followed by Acer, Apple and Toshiba in the United States. Worldwide, Dell stayed ahead of Acer, Lenovo and Toshiba.

Mininotebooks-or "netbooks"-saved the day in a difficult economy, according to 2009 first-quarter PC shipment numbers from IDC. At the same time, Hewlett-Packard knocked Dell out of the No. 1 spot in the U.S. PC market.
In the United States, shipments fell only 3 percent, buoyed by the sale of portable devices from Hewlett-Packard, Acer and Toshiba.
"Tight credit and economic concerns have certainly taken a toll on PC shipments in the last couple quarters, but the move to portables, fueled by mininotebooks and falling prices, has mitigated the impact," said Loren Loverde, an analyst with IDC, when the figures were announced April 15.
In the United States, HP pulled ahead of Dell for the No. 1 spot, shipping 4.1 million units. Dell, in second place, shipped 3.9 million units. Acer followed with 1.5 million, then Apple with 1.1 million and finally Toshiba, just shy of the 1 million mark.
IDC writes that record-low prices and the steady penetration of mininotebooks helped drive PC shipments, with HP and Acer leading the charge. HP's market share grew by 2.9 percent from the first quarter of 2008 to the first quarter of 2009. Acer saw a growth of 6.8 percent in the same period, and Toshiba, though in fifth place, boosted market share 11.6 percent in that period.
On the larger stage, HP again came out on top, shipping 13 million units worldwide. Dell, followed again, shipping 8.7 million units. Acer shipped 7.3, and Lenovo and Toshiba shipped 4.4 million and 3.4 million, respectively.
Worldwide PC shipments-including desktop and portable PCs, but excluding x86 servers-were down 7.1 percent from the first quarter of 2008, which was a slightly better scenario than predicted.
IDC reports that Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) showed its first yearly decline since 2001, and that while interest in portable PCs continues to drive demand, sales were flat, though helped by demand for mininotebooks in Western Europe in particular.
In Japan, mininotebook adoption continued to grow, but commercial and desktop volumes fell, as customers cut back on more expensive purchases. And in Asia/Pacific areas excluding Japan, most countries came close to IDC forecasts, which balanced a significant decline in India. Additionally, desktop shipments declined faster than expected, and consumer portables were the main driver, particularly in China.
This eWEEK product gallery highlights a few of the netbook offerings that helped to put HP, Dell and Lenovo on top.