PC sales stabilizing for the first time in two years, Gartner says

Good news for PC makers today – while sales of the desktop computer aren’t exactly booming, they’re no longer plunging the way they have been for the past two years either, according to research from Gartner Inc.

In the second quarter of 2014, PC shipments have hit flat growth, with 75.8 million units shipped. That’s a 0.1 per cent increase compared to the same period in 2013.

This may sound like a minuscule victory for PC makers, but it actually bodes well for the future, said principal Gartner analyst Mikako Kitagawa. She noted while sales of PCs are declining in emerging markets because consumers there are more interested in low-cost tablets, PCs are finding more favour in developed markets once again.

“We are seeing a slowdown in premium tablet sales, which have already penetrated a large number of households. PCs are now growing off a smaller installed base of newer devices, with more engaged users,” she said in a statement.

“Therefore, we expect to see slow, but consistent, PC growth. While the end of support for Windows XP drove some of the sales in developed markets, it is the underlying business replacement cycle that will stabilize the market.”

PC sales worldwide in Q2 of 2014. (Image: Gartner).
PC sales worldwide in Q2 of 2014. (Image: Gartner).

Right now, Chinese company Lenovo is leading the pack in terms of market share, growing in double digits in almost every region except for the Asia-Pacific. HP and Dell are also up there, as HP has spent some time revitalizing its PC business, ensuring its products are up to scratch. The company has also been strengthening its relationships with channel partners, while Dell has been taking advantage of a strong demand for business PCs.

And while there weren’t any Canadian numbers available, it appears as though the U.S. consumer PC market has seen an upswing – which could be mirrored here in Canada.

“The consumer PC market also started picking up in the U.S. The availability of affordable, thin and light notebooks have drawn consumers’ attention,” Kitagawa said.

“Touch [enabled] devices are also widely available with decreasing price premiums compared to a year ago. The price premium is low enough for mainstream consumers to spend the extra money for the additional functionalities, such as touch.”

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Candice So
Candice Sohttp://www.itbusiness.ca
Candice is a graduate of Carleton University and has worked in several newsrooms as a freelance reporter and intern, including the Edmonton Journal, the Ottawa Citizen, the Globe and Mail, and the Windsor Star. Candice is a dog lover and a coffee drinker.

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