1Gartner, IDC Find Global PC Shipments Declined for Sixth Straight Year
According to new data from researchers IDC and Gartner, global PC shipments continued their years-long decline in 2017 as sales by small manufacturers such as Acer and Asus stumbled. The latest numbers mean that overall PC shipments have declined for six straight years. But the researchers’ data also suggests the critical 2017 fourth quarter was lucrative for some big vendors, including HP and Apple. While some international markets, including Asia/Pacific, were strong for PCs, the U.S. experienced what Gartner characterized as a “steep decline.” The Gartner and IDC data suggest PC shipments will remain stagnant with little sign of a turnaround as 2018 unfolds.
2IDC, Gartner Agree Global PC Shipments Weak
IDC and Gartner differ on just how good—or bad—the 2027 fourth quarter was for PC makers. IDC estimates that 70.6 million PCs shipped worldwide during the period, representing 0.7 percent growth compared to the same period in 2016. Gartner’s tally put worldwide PC shipments at 71.6 million units, a 2 percent decline compared to the fourth quarter of 2016.
3Garter Reports Steep Declines in U.S. PC Shipments
It appears to have been an especially troubling fourth quarter for the U.S. PC market. According to Gartner’s data, U.S. PC shipments slid 8 percent from 16.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2016 to 15.2 million last quarter. IDC said total U.S. PC shipments stood at 16.5 million in the fourth quarter and also said those were down year over year. However, IDC didn’t say in a statement how much shipments declined year over year.
4HP Posts a Strong Quarter
Gartner and IDC agreed that HP had a strong fourth quarter. During the period, the world’s largest PC maker shipped 16.6 million units, earning it a 23.5 percent market share and an 8.3-percent growth rate year over year, according to IDC. Gartner pegged HP’s market share at 22.5 percent on 16.1 million unit shipments—a 6.6 percent growth rate.
5Lenovo PC Shipments Showed Little Growth
Gartner’s data suggests Lenovo shipped 15.7 million units worldwide during the fourth quarter, earning the company 22 percent market share, despite a 0.7 percent year over year drop in shipments. IDC said Lenovo’s market share was 22.2 percent during the period on 15.7 million shipments. According to IDC, Lenovo shipped nearly the same number of PCs during the period as it did in the fourth quarter of 2016.
6Dell Showed Significant Shipment Growth
In third place, Dell is holding its own against HP and Lenovo. IDC’s data says Dell shipped 11.1 million PCs in the fourth quarter, earning the company 15.7 percent market share. Gartner said Dell shipped 10.8 million units during the period, helping the company grow its market share from 14.7 percent in 2016 to 15.2 percent at the end of 2017.
7Apple’s Macs Continue to Surge
Apple was one of the few companies that actually saw year-over-year growth in the fourth quarter there was significant disagreement between the numbers reported by Gartner and IDC. According to Gartner, Apple shipped 5.4 million Macs during the period, a 1.4 percent year-over-year growth rate that garnered the company 7.6 percent market share in the fourth quarter. IDC, however, says Apple shipped 5.7 million units, earning the company 8.2 percent market with Mac shipments increasing 7.3 percent year over year.
8Asus Falls Off a Cliff
Asus’ troubles in the PC market continue. IDC said that the company shipped 4.5 million PCs in the fourth quarter, an 11.2 percent decline compared to the fourth quarter of 2016. Gartner had similarly sobering news with an estimate that Asus shipped 4.73 million units during the period. Those shipments were off 11.3 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2016, according to Gartner.
9Acer Is In the Same Boat
Acer was just barely behind Asus in the fourth quarter 4.72 million PC shipments, a 5.4 percent decline compared to the fourth quarter of 2016, according to Gartner. IDC said that Acer shipped 4.49 million units during the period, enough to earn the company 6.4 percent market share. However, shipments were down 8.1 percent year over year.
10Smaller Manufacturers Also Continued to Struggle
In an “others” category that includes all other PC makers, including Samsung and Toshiba, things were somewhat disappointing. According to IDC, all other PC makers shipped 12.4 million units in the fourth quarter, a 2.2 percent decline compared to the fourth quarter of 2016. Gartner said things were a bit worse and PC shipments were actually down 10.3 percent from 21.4 million units in the fourth quarter of 2016 to 14 million in the 2017 fourth quarter.
11PC Shipments Declined for Sixth Year
Looking back on all of 2017, Gartner said 262.5 million PCs shipped worldwide, a 2.8 percent decline compared to 2016. This means PC shipments have declined now for six full years. HP remains on top of the PC market with 21 percent market share on 55.2 million units shipped, followed by Lenovo and Dell, which tallied 20.8 percent and 15.2 percent market share, respectively. IDC estimated that 259.5 million units shipped in 2017, a 0.2 percent decline compared to the prior year. Like Gartner, it listed HP, Lenovo, and Dell as the top three PC makers.