PC sales continue to decline


For the year, 2017 PC shipments surpassed 262.5 million units, a 2.8 percent decline from 2016.

Topping the list of PC shipments in 2017 were HP (58,800 shipments), Lenovo (54,857), Dell (41,821), Apple (19,661), Acer Group (17,564), and ASUS (17,109). For the fourth consecutive quarter, Lenovo, in second place, experienced a decline in shipments, with shipments down 0.7 percent, though its market lifted somewhat to 22 percent from 21.7 percent. The numbers still show the market is weak, but coupled with a year-over-year decline of only 0.2% shows that the market may actually be stabilizing, the company said.

While Gartner says their results are preliminary at this stage, they expressed some optimism that the market is still alive and kicking, a sentiment somewhat echoed by IDC who says the results validate the view of a steadying, albeit still weak, traditional PC market.

According to Gartner, the Asia/Pacific PC market totalled 25 million units in the fourth quarter of 2017, which represents a 0.6 percent increase from the fourth quarter of 2016. As the PC market has been on a decline in recent years, this marks the first growth for the holiday quarter in six years, IDC says. There was only a moderate shipment decline in EMEA, ' said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner.

Total PC shipments in the U.S. reached 16.5 million units, lead by HP with a 34 percent marketshare. The consumer market stabilized thanks to online promotions in many countries, which drove demand for gaming PCs and thin and light notebooks.

For the full year, the top four vendors accounted for 64 percent of global PC shipments.

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In the United States market, IDC reported the overall PC market performed below expectations in the Q4 2017, with a drop in notebook and desktop sales.

In terms of manufacturers, HP represented the biggest share of the pie, taking a 23.5 percent share of the worldwide market in terms of shipments.

According to IDC, market demand was driven by a desire from PC suppliers to snap up machines before components shortages drive up prices further. Lenovo had moderate growth in EMEA and Asia/Pacific, but shipments declined in North America.

Kitagawa adds that while the market is complicated, PCs aren't dead yet.

Kitagawa said: "PCs simply could not compete against these gifts items during the holiday season". This will increase PC average selling prices (ASPs) and help profitability in the long run. "Until this point is reached, the market will have to go through the shrinking phase caused by fewer PC users", Kitgawa added.