PC shipments drop as consumers opt for tablets

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PC shipments drop as consumers opt for tablets

Kathleen Hall

Worldwide shipments of PCs fell 1.4% in the last quarter of 2011, as consumers opted for tablets over the Christmas period.

According to preliminary figures from Gartner, worldwide PC shipments totaled 92.2 million units in the fourth quarter of 2011. PC shipments in EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) totaled 29 million, a 9.6% decline from the fourth quarter of 2010. Weak consumer demand in mature markets was blamed for the fall in the fourth quarter, despite good growth in the professional market, said Gartner.

Worldwide PC shipments for the full year 2011 were 352.8 million units, a small 0.5% increase from 2010.  

“The professional PC segment performed well as end of year budgets were used to purchase PCs, but we expect the segment will face a difficult year as many verticals are expecting a much tougher business environment in 2012,” said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner.

“We expect most vendors will put their emphasis on ultrabooks and Windows 8 in 2012. However, with the divergence of consumer spend toward alternative devices intensifying in 2012, the new ultrabook platform and surrounding ecosystem will need to form a highly compelling proposition to withstand this competition for consumer spend from other devices,” he said.

HP shipped the most units during the period, maintaining its lead over Lenovo in second place. Acer had the worst performance of the quarter among the top five vendors, and continued to decline more than 30% year-on-year.

Lenovo experienced the strongest growth, as its PC shipments grew 23% in the fourth quarter of 2011. The company’s growth was attributed to its aggressive pricing in both the professional and consumer markets, said Gartner.

The floods in Thailand at the end of last year had a limited impact on PC shipments, as the country is one of the main manufacturers of hard-disk drives, said Gartner. However, the research company expects figures in the first half of 2012 to continue to fall, reflecting the effects of the disaster.

Preliminary worldwide PC shipments for 2011 (Gartner)


Company

2011 Shipments

2011 Market Share (%)

2010 Shipments

2010 Market Share (%)

2011-2010 Growth (%)

HP

60,554,726

17.2

62,741,274

17.9

-3.5

Lenovo

45,703,863

13.0

38,180,444

10.9

19.7

Dell

42,864,759

12.1

42,119,272

12.0

1.8

Acer Group

39,415,381

11.2

48,758,542

13.9

-19.2

ASUS

20,768,465

5.9

18,902,723

5.4

9.9

Others

143,499,792

40.7

140,198,078

40.0

2.4

Total

352,806,984

100.0

350,900,332

100.0

0.5

 


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