Acer Gains, Dell Stumbles in 2009 PC Market

Acer may have lost the 2009 No. 2 worldwide PC market share position to Dell, according to a new report from iSuppli, but it grew faster than Dell, HP, Lenovo and Toshiba. Meanwhile, Dell was the only top-five PC maker to show a loss.

PC makers Dell and Acer were neck-and-neck through 2009, fighting for the No. 2 market share position, according to research firm iSuppli.
And though in the end the title went to Dell, which nudged past Acer by only a "hair's breadth," or 0.2 percentage points, Acer was nonetheless the year's big winner, iSuppli reported March 9.
Of the top five PC makers in 2009, Acer showed the strongest growth, with shipments rising to 38.5 million units, up from 2008's 31.8 million units. Overall, Acer achieved a 28 percent increase in notebook shipments for the year, while the rise for the market was 20 percent.
"Acer's 2009 success was driven by the notebook PC market," Matthew Wilkins, an iSuppli senior analyst, said in a statement. "Notebooks accounted for nearly 80 percent of Acer's shipments in 2009. This allowed the company to capitalize on the fast-growing mobile computing segment while limiting its exposure to the moribund desktop segment."
Dell, by contrast, was the only top-five PC maker to post a decline for the year, shipping 38.96 million units, down from 43.3 million units in 2008. While Acer cruised ahead, relying on its netbook and notebook shipments, and seeing only 0.1 percent decline in desktop sales - compared to the 15 percent desktop drop experienced by the overall market - Dell felt the pinch.
"Dell's desktop shipments fell at a greater rate than the overall desktop segment," states the report. "Furthermore, its notebook shipments grew at a much lower rate than that of the overall market. Dell's share of the global PC market has dwindled in recent years, declining to 12.9 percent in 2009, down 4.2 points from 17.1 percent in 2005."
Top vendor Hewlett-Packard grew 7.4 percent over the year, shipping 59.6 million units and settling into a market share of 19.7 percent. Dell's market share for the year stood at 12.9 percent, with Acer following at 12.7 percent.
No. 4 Lenovo saw growth of 14.2 percent for the year, shipped 24.9 million units and finished with a market share of 8.2 percent. Toshiba, in fifth place, grew by 13.7 percent, shipped 15.5 million units and finished with 5.1 percent of the industry's worldwide market share.
The overall market, iSuppli reported, "defied expectations," particularly through a global recession, and grew 1 percent in 2009, hopping up to 302.3 million units, from 2008's 299.2 million units.
The same week as the iSuppli report, Dell made two sets of announcements, introducing a new line of Vostro notebooks for small business and a robust mobile workstation for heavy-lifters such as engineers and animators.