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PC sales continue to slump despite signs of economic recovery

PC shipments have slumped to the lowest level since the height of the recession in 2008

The signs of economic recovery and the back-to-school period have failed to inject life into the PC sector as shipments slumped to the lowest level since the height of the recession in 2008.

Worldwide shipments of PCs fell by 8.6% in the third quarter of 2013 compared to the same period last year. Although Lenovo (2.8%), HP (1.5%), and Dell (1%) managed to increase sales, Acer and Asus both experienced just over 22% reductions.

There were 80,279,267 PC shipments worldwide in the third quarter this year, compared to 87,809,406 in the same period last year. This is the lowest level since 2008.

Mikako Kitagawa, analyst at Gartner, said despite the 'back-to-school' quarter for PC sales in North America and Europe, sales dropped to their lowest volume since 2008.

He said the arrival of lower-cost tablet devices has hastened the decline in PC sales. "Consumers' shift from PCs to tablets for daily content consumption continued to decrease the installed base of PCs both in mature as well as in emerging markets. A greater availability of inexpensive Android tablets attracted first-time consumers in emerging markets, and as supplementary devices in mature markets."

Lenovo had a 17.6% of global PC shipments in the period and HP had 17.1%.

Europe saw a sharp decline. PC shipments in EMEA were 22.4m in the quarter, which was 13.7% lower than the same period last year. It was the sixth consecutive quarter of declining PC shipments in the region.

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