Gartner Says Declining Worldwide PC Shipments in Fourth Quarter of 2012 Signal Structural Shift of PC Market

  Gartner Says Declining Worldwide PC Shipments in Fourth Quarter of 2012
  Signal Structural Shift of PC Market

   Global PC Shipments Declined 4.9 Percent in Fourth Quarter While EMEA PC
                        Shipments Declined 9.6 Percent

Business Wire

STAMFORD, Conn. -- January 14, 2013

Worldwide PC shipments totaled 90.3 million units in the fourth quarter of
2012, a 4.9 percent decline from the fourth quarter of 2011, according to
preliminary results by Gartner, Inc. Analysts said the PC industry’s problems
point to something beyond a weak economy.

“Tablets have dramatically changed the device landscape for PCs, not so much
by ‘cannibalizing’ PC sales, but by causing PC users to shift consumption to
tablets rather than replacing older PCs,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal
analyst at Gartner. “Whereas as once we imagined a world in which individual
users would have both a PC and a tablet as personal devices, we increasingly
suspect that most individuals will shift consumption activity to a personal
tablet, and perform creative and administrative tasks on a shared PC. There
will be some individuals who retain both, but we believe they will be
exception and not the norm. Therefore, we hypothesize that buyers will not
replace secondary PCs in the household, instead allowing them to age out and
shifting consumption to a tablet.”

“This transformation was triggered by the availability of compelling low-cost
tablets in 2012, and will continue until the installed base of PCs declines to
accommodate tablets as the primary consumption device,” Ms. Kitagawa said. “On
the positive side for vendors, the disenfranchised PCs are those with lighter
configurations, which mean that we should see an increase in PC average
selling prices (ASPs) as users replace machines used for richer applications,
rather than for consumption.”

During the holiday season, consumers no longer viewed PCs as the number one
gift item. Given a burgeoning variety of increasingly more attractive devices
and services, consumers directed their attention elsewhere. Analysts said
there was uptake of very low priced notebooks as a part of mega holiday deals,
but this uptake did little to boost holiday PC sales.

The launch of Microsoft’s Windows 8 did not have a significant impact on PC
shipments in the fourth quarter. Analysts said some PC vendors offered
somewhat lackluster form factors in their Windows 8 offerings and missed the
excitement of touch. New products are coming to market, and this could drive
churn within the installed base.

HP regained the top position in worldwide PC shipments in the fourth quarter
of 2012 (see Table 1), however the company’s shipments did not grow compared
to a year ago. Analysts said HP most likely gave up a certain margin level to
gain market shares. HP was successful in managing large retail deals targeting
Microsoft’s Windows 8 launch and holiday sales in selected regions.

Table 1
Preliminary Worldwide PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 4Q12 (Units)
                              4Q12                        4Q11
Company      4Q12           Market      4Q11          Market   4Q12-4Q11
              Shipments       Share (%)    Shipments      Share     Growth (%)
                                                          (%)
HP           14,645,041     16.2        14,711,280    15.5     -0.5
Lenovo        13,976,668      15.5         12,915,766     13.6      8.2
Dell          9,206,391       10.2         11,633,387     12.2      -20.9
Acer          8,622,701       9.5          9,690,624      10.2      -11.0
Group
ASUS          6,528,228       7.2          6,133,042      6.5       6.4
Others        37,393,913      41.4         39,934,184     42.0      -6.4
Total        90,372,942     100.0       95,018,284    100.0    -4.9
Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks
but not media tablets such as the iPad.
Data is based on the shipments selling into channels.
Source: Gartner (January 2013)


Lenovo dropped to the No. 2 position in the fourth quarter of 2012, but it
experienced the best growth rate (8.2 percent) among the top five PC vendors
worldwide. Lenovo’s growth exceeded regional growth rates in North America,
EMEA and Asia/Pacific, but lower than the industry average in Latin America
and Japan. In North America, Lenovo performed well by expanding in the retail
market and protecting professional market.

In the U.S., PC shipments totaled 17.5 million units in the fourth quarter of
2012, a 2.1 percent decline from the fourth quarter of 2011 (see Table 2). Due
to the tight inventory control and preparation for the Windows 8 launch, most
PC vendors were able to ship Windows 8 PCs to the retail space. However, PC
sell-through was rather weak which leaves some level of inventory concerns for
vendors in the consumer market.

“Consumer’s holiday spending went into other products and services, and U.S.
holiday sales became less important for PC sales. For professionals, the
fourth quarter is typically a good sales season because of last minutes PC
purchases before the tax year-end. Our early research indicates that there was
good growth in professional PC sales,” Ms. Kitagawa said.

Table 2
Preliminary U.S. PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 4Q12 (Units)
                              4Q12                        4Q11
Company     4Q12            Market      4Q11          Market   4Q12-4Q11
             Shipments        Share (%)    Shipments      Share     Growth (%)
                                                          (%)
HP          4,657,123       26.6        4,137,788     23.1     12.6
Dell         3,355,152        19.2         4,020,549      22.5      -16.5
Apple        2,145,082        12.3         2,035,082      11.4      5.4
Lenovo       1,476,606        8.4          1,345,975      7.5       9.7
Acer         1,377,824        7.9          1,756,838      9.8       -21.6
Group
Others       4,493,820        25.7         5,637,726      25.6      -2.0
Total       17,505,607      100.0       17,881,424    100.0    -2.1
Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks
but not media tablets such as the iPad.
Data is based on the shipments selling into channels.
Source: Gartner (January 2013)


PC shipments in EMEA totaled 28.1 million units in the fourth quarter of 2012,
a 9.6 percent decrease from the fourth quarter of 2011 (see Table 3). Western
Europe remained the weak point across EMEA, as Central and Eastern Europe and
the Middle East and Africa saw growth quarter-on-quarter.

“The PC market continues to face many headwinds. The launch of Windows 8 had
no impact on PC demand, especially as Ultramobile products were both limited
in supply, as well as being priced too high,” said Ranjit Atwal, research
director at Gartner. “The holiday season mostly saw retailers clearing Windows
7 notebook inventory or driving volume of low-end notebooks. Furthermore, the
increasing choice of tablets at decreasing price points no doubt became a
favorite Christmas present ahead of PCs.”

“In the fourth quarter of 2012, mobile PC shipments decreased 11 percent while
desktop PC shipments declined 6 percent year-on-year,” said Isabelle Durand,
principal research analyst at Gartner. “However, all-in-one form factor models
from Asus, Lenovo and HP look like a promising platform for the future.”

HP retained the No. 1 position in the fourth quarter of 2012, thanks to good
results across all products in the professional PC segment. Dell performed
weakly, losing nearly 2 percent share in the fourth quarter of 2012. Among the
top five vendors, only Lenovo showed year-on-year growth and its strong
performance in the quarter helped it displace Acer from the No. 2 position.

In the second half of 2012, the EMEA PC market experienced two consecutive
quarters of decline, resulting in overall shipments for 2012 declining 2.8
percent from 2011. Western Europe lost another 10 percent of volume,
indicating likely structural changes to the market rather than weak demand.

Table 3
Preliminary EMEA PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 4Q12 (Units)
                              4Q12                        4Q11
Company     4Q12            Market      4Q11          Market   4Q12-4Q11
             Shipments        Share (%)    Shipments      Share     Growth (%)
                                                          (%)
HP          5,346,900       19.1        5,829,182     18.8     -8.3
Lenovo       3,087,629        11.0         2,386,877      7.7       29.4
Acer         3,015,318        10.7         3,532,612      11.4      -14.6
Group
ASUS         2,794,279        10.0         3,233,350      10.4      -13.6
Dell         2,351,990        8.4          3,176,724      10.2      -26.0
Others       11,458,059       40.8         12,887,932     41.5      -11.1
Total       28,054,175      100.0       31,046,677    100.0    -9.6
Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks
but not media tablets such as the iPad.
Data is based on the shipments selling into channels.
Source: Gartner (January 2013)


PC shipments in Asia/Pacific totaled 29.9 million units in the fourth quarter
of 2012, a 1.8 percent decline from the fourth quarter of 2011. Vendors
struggled to offer compelling products to convince buyers to upgrade and
attract new buyers as consumers' interest continues to be on smartphones and
tablets. The introduction of Windows 8 met with lukewarm response and
availability was primarily on the higher-end models, which were priced beyond
the mainstream price point for volume sales.

For the year, PC shipments were 352.7 million units, a 3.5 percent decline
from 2011 (see Table 4). HP retained the top spot in the global PC market,
accounting for 16 percent of the market. Lenovo was the No. 2 vendor with 14.8
percent market share. Asus showed the strongest growth among the top five
vendors, with shipments increasing 17.1 percent.

Table 4
Preliminary Worldwide PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 2012 (Units)
                                2012                      2011
Company     2012              Market   2011           Market   2012-2011
             Shipments          Share     Shipments       Share     Growth (%)
                                (%)                       (%)
HP          56,508,218        16.0     60,553,740     16.6     -6.7
Lenovo       52,159,229         14.8      45,688,493      12.5      14.2
Dell         37,611,747         10.7      42,864,265      11.7      -12.3
Acer         36,661,066         10.4      39,282,791      10.8      -6.7
Group
ASUS         24,206,696         6.9       20,678,302      5.7       17.1
Others       145,554,478        41.3      156,278,584     42.8      -6.9
Total       352,701,433       100.0    365,364,175    100.0    -3.5
Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks
but not media tablets such as the iPad.
Data is based on the shipments selling into channels.
Source: Gartner (January 2013)


These results are preliminary. Final statistics will be available soon to
clients of Gartner's PC Quarterly Statistics Worldwide by Region program. This
program offers a comprehensive and timely picture of the worldwide PC market,
allowing product planning, distribution, marketing and sales organizations to
keep abreast of key issues and their future implications around the globe.

About Gartner

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visit www.gartner.com.

Contact:

Gartner
Janessa Rivera, 408-468-8312
janessa.rivera@gartner.com
or
Laurence Goasduff, +44 (0) 1784-267-195
laurence.goasduff@gartner.com
 
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