A new study says global PC shipments fell by 1.7 percent (78.5 million units) in the third quarter when compared to the same period last year.
That news come from International Data Corp. (IDC), which warns that the falling number doesn’t tell the whole story. Lenovo, HP and Dell all show “solid year-on-year growth” in commercial PC sales. Not only that, the forecast was for a 4 percent drop overall.
Fierce competition and a falling prices further consolidated the market. Shipments of entry systems, including Chromebooks, continued to inject an important source of volume and sustained improved consumer demand in certain markets over recent quarters, IDC said.
Sales in North America and parts of Europe improved. Although Windows XP migrations has slowed, an improved business outlook, tablet saturation in some markets, and expanded offerings of competitive notebooks have factored in recent positive trends.
Emerging regions as a whole proved disappointing, although stronger than expected consumer demand in Asia/Pacific, spurred by the continued expansion of entry-level portable PCs and helping to redirect consumer attention back toward PCs, provided a silver lining.
“Although shipments did not decline as much as feared, these preliminary results still show that 3Q14 was one of the weaker calendar third quarters on record in terms of sequential growth. The third quarter has historically been driven by back-to-school sales and renewed business purchasing, which were weaker than normal this year,” said Jay Chou, senior research analyst, Worldwide PC Trackers, IDC. “The current growth of lower-priced systems, while encouraging in the short run, brings concern for the long term viability of vendors to adequately remain in the PC space.”