Gartner: PC shipments shrunk by 0.1% last quarter

These aren’t the best times for the PC industry. Gartner has posted preliminary numbers for this year’s second quarter, and it looks like PC shipments fell by 0.1% compared to the same quarter a year back—from 87.56 million units to 87.47 million. According to Gartner analyst Mikako Kitagawa, that makes Q2 2012 the “seventh consecutive quarter of flat to single-digit growth” for the PC market.

Gartner pins the blame on “uncertainties in the economy in various regions, as well as consumer’s low interest in PC purchases.” Not surprisingly, the research firm says consumers are more interested in the latest tablets and smartphones than in upgrading their PCs. Also, despite Intel’s best efforts—not to mention a fair amount of buzz from PC vendors—ultrabooks don’t seem to be generating much excitement. “Shipment volume was small and little impact on overall shipment growth,” says Gartner in reference to the new thin-and-light systems.

Along with all the doom and gloom, Gartner’s report includes market share data for major PC vendors. In the United States last quarter, it seems Apple was the only vendor in the top five whose shipments didn’t recede. The Mac maker saw 4.3% unit growth from Q2 2011 to Q2 2012, and it remained firmly in third place, with its market share inching up from 10.8% to 12%. Acer, the next biggest PC vendor in the U.S. by volume, had its share slip from 9.3% to 8.5% over the same time period.

Worldwide, Asian PC makers have apparently fared better than their American counterparts. Lenovo, Acer, and Asus all saw their shipments go up, while HP and Dell both suffered declines of around 12%. HP now seems in danger of losing the top-dog spot to Lenovo: it was ahead by 4.2 points last year, but the two firms are now almost on even footing, with 14.7% and 14.5% of the global market, respectively. Dell, meanwhile, has already lost the number-three spot to Acer.

Comments closed
    • End User
    • 7 years ago

    A nice overview of the numbers: [url<]http://www.asymco.com/2012/07/12/waiting-for-godot/[/url<]

    • sschaem
    • 7 years ago

    Its getting funny to see all the doom and gloom and yet, Apple just keep doing better, allot better.

    “PC industry stagnates, Apple PC sale increase 12%”
    “PC industry on the verge of obsolescence, Apple sold 40 million ipad, keep growing”
    “Music Industry revenue collapse, iTune now become a multi billion profit machine”

    Whats next ?
    “Cable company loose subscribers by the millions” “Apple create a new billion $ market with its new iPTV”

    What happen to netflix when iTune come with a 14.95$ a month streaming product?
    What happen to xbox when the new iTV HW comes with a gaming SDK…

    Apple become untouchable, yet got plenty of market to decimate in its path.

      • DeadOfKnight
      • 7 years ago

      Your corruption of the English language makes me cringe.

        • BloodSoul
        • 7 years ago

        What happen to English when Apple releases Applish?
        English market share drop low while Applish Succeedd!

        Applish untouchable, yet got plenty o market path to decimate!

          • BloodSoul
          • 7 years ago

          That hurt me to write.

            • superjawes
            • 7 years ago

            That’s fair because it hurt reading it.

          • MadManOriginal
          • 7 years ago

          They’ll patent language and then we’ll all have to pay licensing fees 🙁

            • BobbinThreadbare
            • 7 years ago

            “A system by which communication takes place through a medium of modulated air”

            • Beelzebubba9
            • 7 years ago

            And even if they don’t charge for its use, they’ll change it every three years and completely break backwards compatibility.

        • sschaem
        • 7 years ago

        I feel the same way when ever I read news paper headlines…


        Some people have difficulty understanding newspaper headlines. This is because newspaper headlines are often incomplete. For example:

        Difficult Times Ahead
        Under Pressure from Boss
        Mustang Referral Customer Complaint

        My quote where written in that style.

        • Wirko
        • 7 years ago

        You think it’s corruption, I think it’s written in [i<]no future[/i<] tense.

      • NeelyCam
      • 7 years ago

      Netflix streaming is much cheaper than $15/mo

        • sschaem
        • 7 years ago

        Yes, thats the point I’m making. Apple can charge more and still overthrow the competition.

        (Dont underestimate what 100 billion in cash can do when signing contracts…)

      • Bensam123
      • 7 years ago

      You know marketing has become hugely popular because it sells things. Does it necessarily mean whatever product is being marketed is superior to its competitors?

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 7 years ago

    HP can’t recover from their, “We’re leaving the PC market!” then, “Oops, no we’re not!” snafu. They can change CEO’s all they want, but that was a moment where their idiocy was displayed for the whole world.

    The Emperor is naked and everyone knows it.

      • Farting Bob
      • 7 years ago

      I doubt many people in the general public noticed/cared. Business contracts last a long time and guarentee if you buy this length warrenty/service you will get that (short of the company going bust, which HP wont do for a long long time). And consumers who read about it on techreport etc dont buy HP anyway. Yes it would hurt sales slightly, but to say they wont recover from something quiet small like that is overestimating the impact.

      HP has internal problems, but this statement on its own isnt the biggest one.

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 7 years ago

    If only one could replace the board HP might have a chance.

      • sschaem
      • 7 years ago

      HP is now rotten and the issue goes beyond their corrupt, and self serving, board.

      HP is now associated with a low tech company that run an ink scamming business and just resell plastic crap from China.

      And consumer now realize that they have a choice of
      a) buy a 6 pound 500$ piece of platsic laptop from HP and have to deal with bloat and a 2 to 3 hour battery life
      b) buy a 500$ high quality, no compromise, ipad3 with a quality display, etc..

      No wonder Apple sell over 4000 ipad every hours, 24hour a day, of every single day of the year.

      PC industry response… “Let make some cheap copy of the macbook air”

        • BobbinThreadbare
        • 7 years ago

        There is room for a cheap company though. Not everyone wants a thousand dollar laptop.

    • Creed
    • 7 years ago

    I just got myself a nice raise at work and I told myself i would upgrade my machine. Then i started to look at the price of components, and realized that for a reasonable upgrade, i would basically be spending my entire raise and upgrading everything.

    Then I looked honestly at my computer and realized that my computer doesnt feel slow….its just not as fast as I know modern hardware can be. So I decided not to upgrade until my computer actually feels slow.

    I think there might be a lot of this thinking as I think entry level hardware is already greatly exceeding program requirements for most users.

      • blastdoor
      • 7 years ago

      Obvious point, but if you don’t have an SSD, just get that, and your computer will feel even faster.

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        ^This times 20

        • Creed
        • 7 years ago

        That is the one piece of hardware I did buy as i got a good price on a 120GB Vertex3.

          • indeego
          • 7 years ago

          But of course you did! OCZ firesales have been around for a long time since Vertex 2 days.

          • Bensam123
          • 7 years ago

          Yeah, that’s good stuff. If you really wanted to push things a bit you could find a nice mid-high end video card to upgrade to in order to take advantage of the few PC titles that use it.

      • willmore
      • 7 years ago

      ^^^ If more people though like you did about more things, the world would be a better place.

      • Bensam123
      • 7 years ago

      And consolization drives the stake deeper into the hands of PC hardware.

      • moose17145
      • 7 years ago

      Yea I am having the same issue with my machine… I WANT to upgrade… but am having a very hard time justifying it…

      I built my current system in December of 2008…

      Core i7 920
      6GB DDR3 1333
      Radeon 1GB 4870
      And a whole bunch of random HDD’s in a JBOD array… (hey they still work… why toss em?)

      Honestly this system is still for the most part more than I need… I still have yet to find a single game that actually stresses the CPU. As much as I would like to have more ram, the 6 gigs I currently have seems to be more than I really NEED. Heck the only part that really seems to be showing it’s age is the videocard. If I replaced that, I am fairly certain that my machine would darn near be a top of the line gaming rig again in terms of what I could throw at it..

      The one thing I do wanna do is upgrade to a SSD as my primary boot / “get actual work done” drive. The 500 gig drive in my laptop failed and I replaced it with a 128GB Crucial M4… seeing what that did for my laptop I can just imagine how it would renew the life of my desktop…

        • Shambles
        • 7 years ago

        Nehalem is a more than capable CPU. I wouldn’t bother upgrading from a 920 until Haswell at the very earliest. Just upgrade your GPU and grab an SSD and you’ll have 95% of the performance of doing an IVB build.

    • Corrado
    • 7 years ago

    We also need to take into account that Windows 7 was the first Windows OS that ran BETTER on similar hardware compared to its predecessor. It didn’t drive people to upgrade their PC’s to run Win7.

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    “seventh consecutive quarter of flat to single-digit growth”

    If you are in a mature, 30+ year old industry like the PC industry and you can pull off single-digit percentage growth during a quarter that’s actually pretty outstanding.

      • blastdoor
      • 7 years ago

      I wouldn’t call it outstanding. Big segments of the world’s population don’t have PCs yet, AND the world’s population is growing.

      I think the combination of a depression in Europe and the rise of smartphones/tablets must be taking a bite out of PC growth, relative to what it would be without those two factors.

      Certainly not the end of the world, though. There’s still plenty of good money to be made serving markets that aren’t growing very fast. Since turning itself around in the 90s, IBM has been doing a great job of that.

      When I hear people complain that MS has become IBM, I think to myself “MS should be so lucky!” If anything, I think MS’ problem is that it hasn’t turned into IBM — MS is like the middle-aged man trying to act like a teenager.

        • superjawes
        • 7 years ago

        That chunk from tablets and smartphones is probably the biggest factor, especially combined with weak economies. Why spend $500 on a PC when you can get your Facebook and internet browsing on a subsidized phone or $200 tablet?

        Microsoft is seeing itself on the brink of becoming IBM, though. The big difference is that they see that tablets and phones are real competition for PCs, and those markets are going to grow quickly. Windows 8 will likely be the decider of whether Microsoft continues to exist on mobile platforms or has to fall back exclusively on desktop OS.

          • blastdoor
          • 7 years ago

          I bet they have to fall back to desktop/laptop land for OS — even if Win8 were perfect, it’s just too late. But they can still sell a lot of apps for mobile platforms. I’m sure there are tons of people who would pay for Office on an iPad.

      • willmore
      • 7 years ago

      Yep, and I just cleaned out and tuned up mom’s old laptop–including doubling the RAM. It’ll last her for quite some time longer. Maybe I can find her a bigger PATA laptop drive as a refurb at the Egg to keep her going even longer.

    • Chrispy_
    • 7 years ago

    That five-year-old laptop your mum is using still meets the minimum system requirements for the internet and email. It’ll only be replaced when it [i<]breaks.[/i<] People that do more than run an office suite, internet and email on their computers make up a pretty insignificant portion of the industry as a whole.

    • NeelyCam
    • 7 years ago

    How does this work with the AMD announcement..? I mean, does this report take China into account?

      • MadManOriginal
      • 7 years ago

      What it means is that Intel ought to have a nice quarter, assuming the analysts are close to correct.

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        Well, some analysts are already downgrading Intel in anticipation of an AMD-like quarter.

        These folks just can’t be trusted.. I guess we’ll find out next week

      • HighTech4US2
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]How does this work with the AMD announcement..?[/quote<] It means that AMD is just blowing smoke and blaming China when it is AMD's own poor execution that resulted in their 11% revenue shortfall. It also means that with a flat PC market AMD's lost 11% gets added to Intel's & Nvidia's top line. [quote<]Alex Gauna of JMP Securities said the weaker-than-expected sales in China reflect stronger chip updates by rivals NVIDIA (NVDA.O) and Intel (INTC.O). "Both Intel and NVIDIA have out-executed AMD," he said.[/quote<] [url<]http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/09/us-amd-idUSBRE86818V20120709?feedType=RSS&feedName=globalMarketsNews&rpc=43[/url<] [quote<]I mean, does this report take China into account?[/quote<] Yes

        • MadManOriginal
        • 7 years ago

        [quote<]It also means that with a flat PC market AMD's lost 11% gets added to Intel's & Nvidia's top line. [/quote<] That's what I as getting at. Market flat overall, one player of two falls short, the rest has to be picked up elsewhere.

      • ronch
      • 7 years ago

      I have a feeling Intel’s sales figures helped a lot to push the figure up to just 0.1% decline. If AMD were the only CPU supplier it can’t be just 0.1%.

    • chuckula
    • 7 years ago

    That does it! PC’s are dead.

      • dpaus
      • 7 years ago

      87,470,000 new zombies every 90 days, then? No wonder the Zombie Survival Guide is always sold out at my local bookstore.

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        I saw a white van the other day with “ZRT – Zombie Response Team” written on the door. A risky start-up with a fledgling market, but might turn out to be a brilliant move

          • willmore
          • 7 years ago

          It’s a growth industry–any day now.

    • Omniman
    • 7 years ago

    I think they fail to realize that for the people who just web browse and check e-mail they hold onto the old machines…that of course is if they don’t just completely infect it first. I know many people who are still using XP boxes from the 2001 era. It’s more of the apple folks I know who are forced to upgrade an old box because of applications not supporting the OS version.

      • Corrado
      • 7 years ago

      And even that, I know a LOT of people still using C2D MacBook (non-Pros), and they’re all 4-5 years old now. Everything still runs fine, so why upgrade unless it breaks or the battery is shot and you just want a new machine?

        • Deanjo
        • 7 years ago

        My father is still using his socket 754 sempron system and it fills his needs easily.

          • willmore
          • 7 years ago

          Let me know if his machine fails. I just took a Sempron 2800 out of service. So, MB and proc are up for donation.

        • jstern
        • 7 years ago

        The new OSX Mountain Lion won’t support some Macs that are 5 and 4 years old. So even though a lot of people still have their old Macs, Omniman statement is still true.

        In fact when I had a Macbook, the biggest annoyance was how I couldn’t use so many newer program because I needed to upgrade to the latest version of OSX to do so, and I refused to be forced to buy a newer version when my Macbook was just 1 year and a half old.

        So does Apple try to force people to upgrade? Yes.

          • adisor19
          • 7 years ago

          LOL nobody’s forcing you to upgrade. You can keep using your old version of those programs instead of upgrading.

          Adi

    • Arag0n
    • 7 years ago

    I have a dieing laptop but I don´t want to replace until the Surface Pro has price and sale date. A Surface Pro with Ivy Bridge that can be docked to use as desktop, has a cover that works as keyboard to use as laptop and can be used in bed as tablet….shit, that´s what I want. So no matter how dieing my laptop is, i will make it keep alive until I know how much it costs so I can decide if it´s worth to pay.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 7 years ago

      [quote<]...and can be used in bed as **** that´s what I want[/quote<] Word Filter - making censored posts as funny as your imagination since 2007.

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      i’m also intrigued by surface. I like win 8, metro, and the option for a pick up and go hon machine is looking good.

      • Madman
      • 7 years ago

      Although surface pro seems like a neat idea on paper, I’m not sure it will be all it’s hyped out to be.

      1) 1000$ is a lot of money for small, inefficient gadget
      2) Keyboard cover is not going to work on anything but desk
      3) Non physical keyboard sucks for touch typing
      4) No touchpad, so vertical RSI
      5) Super small screen
      6) Most likely a shitty GPU
      7) Touch screen will be pretty bad on miniature “real desktop”
      8) Metro is consume only/single tasking environment

      Given all that, I’m not sure I should be overexcited, it might be good, but there is a great chance to fail as well.

      And given that I would only need tablet to watch movies while in bed, Nexus for 199$ is a tough thing to beat. And actually, laptop for 200$ish with big screen, and which tends to keep screen vertically with no extra work, is not such a bad proposition as well.

        • sweatshopking
        • 7 years ago

        it has a touchpad. i’ve seen reports teh keyboard isn’t bad for touch typing. it’s 11 inches. it’s ivy bridge, so the gpu should be not too horrible. it will have the full desktop, so multitasking, plus metro. and metro supports multiple apps being open, and on the screen at once.

    • Dysthymia
    • 7 years ago

    I’ve been interested in upgrading my Core 2 Duo/Radeon 4850 gaming PC for a couple years now. I would have done it by now if I could afford it. Maybe by the time Haswell comes out…

      • Arclight
      • 7 years ago

      High end gfx cards got really expensive, compared to HD 4000, GTX 200 times. Not to mention that Intel CPUs can’t be OCed anymore….the cheapest K SKU being a bit higher than most would want to pay. I mean a 2500k/3750K is more than good enough performance wise, so much so that if i wanted to save money through OCing that CPU would have never been my target (if you could OC all of them i’d choose the cheapest quad, alas you can’t OC all of them anymore).

        • DeadOfKnight
        • 7 years ago

        Well I think if the 3570K actually offered better performance than an overclocked 2500K we’d see more upgrades as well, but they’re basically the same when used with discrete graphics.

        • MadManOriginal
        • 7 years ago

        HD 4000 and GTX 200 weren’t high-end cards. They were just good values at the time, there are good values right now as well although not necessarily in the newest generation – blame TSMC for that.

        Haswell should offer more flexible overclocking. K-series CPUs are needed for ‘unlimited’ overclocking, but any Intel CPU with Turboboost can be overclocked by 4 bins, that just happens to be under the typical highest ‘easy’ overclock of those CPUs.

          • Krogoth
          • 7 years ago

          HD 48xx and GTX260 and greater were high-end cards in their hey-day.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            Meh, true, I guess he was referring to series and not specific cards. I was thinking of HD4850 and GTX 260 both of which were at least priced in the mid-range given the ‘budget’ nature of the post.

            • Krogoth
            • 7 years ago

            They are still took the place of second-highest tier when they came out.

            The same gap that would eventually be overtaken by 4870 refresh and 275 GTX.

        • brucethemoose
        • 7 years ago

        If only intel would sell an unlocked dual core…

      • DeadOfKnight
      • 7 years ago

      I think a lot of people are holding out for Haswell, and why shouldn’t they? Haswell has been teased by Intel since 2010. In fact, there were rumors and supposed leaks dating back to 2009. Haswell and Haswell-E are slated to adopt the most exciting future technologies on their roadmap, making it the most forward-looking platform with support for all the new instructions and standards. If CPUs weren’t good enough already I’d say it’s probably the architecture to wait for if ever there was one. It also doesn’t help to know that once again you will have to ditch your current motherboard if you wish to upgrade.

    • DeadOfKnight
    • 7 years ago

    I’ll be upgrading in a year. There’s just no need to upgrade yet, what I have does the job just fine and is still under warranty. AMD has a point when they say we’ve reached a point where even low end hardware is “good enough” for most users. I think after the 8th Gen console specs come out we might see a rise in PC sales. Also, I don’t think these statistics include component sales. People are buying individual parts all the time. Just because there isn’t enough to warrant a new build from scratch doesn’t mean PCs are dying off. I also don’t think that these stats include all boutique system vendors or complete system bundles from NCIX, Newegg, etc. Windows 8 is around the corner as well and I know many people whose upgrades usually coincide with a new operating system. Windows 8 will also make a lot of touch interfacing hardware more desirable. As far as ultrabooks are concerned, I haven’t wanted to touch those yet because Intel has already promised so much in Haswell from the very start. I don’t think I’m the only one holding out for this very reason, especially since the main criticism with ultrabooks seems to be battery life and graphics, which are exactly what they’re promising to deliver. I think maybe Intel shot themselves in the foot by revealing this so early, but assuming they do in fact deliver on their promises there is no doubt that PC sales will rise in 2013.

      • Shouefref
      • 7 years ago

      I also expect figures to go up once W8 is on the market.
      That doesn’t mean I want W8, but if it turns around, it turns around, doesn’t it? No religious dogma is gonna stop it from turning around.

      A -1 for this message?
      That must have come from a fanboy. I don’t see any other explanation.
      Or maybe it’s a -1 fanboy.

    • Shouefref
    • 7 years ago

    First.

    (-1, hey, I knew that would piss you off 🙂 )

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