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PC shipments fall during holiday season and across all of 2018

By midian182 · 10 replies
Jan 11, 2019
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  1. For the holiday period, Gartner has worldwide PC shipments at 68.6 million units, down 4.3 percent YoY. Only Lenovo, which moved ahead of HP to become the quarter’s top vendor, and third place Dell showed growth compared to Q4 2017. The rest of the top six was made up of Apple, Asus, and Acer.

    IDC’s figures were only slightly better. It has YoY growth for the quarter down 3.7 percent, with 68.1 million units shipped. The top four firms are the same as Gartner, and Acer replaces Asus in fifth spot.

    IDC writes that vendors aggressively built up their inventories heading into Q3 as concerns over processor shortages and the trade war increased. But a volatile stock market and a post-Black Friday/Cyber Monday downturn saw “the lowest sequential growth for a holiday quarter since the fourth quarter of 2012.”

    Gartner placed the blame on Intel’s manufacturing problems and the subsequent CPU shortage, but it’s optimistic about the year ahead.

    “Just when demand in the PC market started seeing positive results, a shortage of CPUs (central processing units) created supply chain issues,” said Mikako Kitagawa, senior principal analyst at Gartner. “The impact from the CPU shortage affected vendors’ ability to fulfill demand created by business PC upgrades. We expect this demand will be pushed forward into 2019 if CPU availability improves.”

    Despite showing growth in the second and third quarters, Gartner said 2018 was the seventh year PC shipments experienced annual declines, though the 1.3 percent fall to 259 million units wasn’t as bad as the previous three years. Additionally, the top three companies showed growth.

    IDC had shipments for the year flat (258 million) at -0.4 percent and places HP ahead of Lenovo at the top, but it did say US-China tensions could cause more problems.

    “The majority of the PC shipment decline in 2018 was due to weak consumer PC shipments. Consumer shipments accounted for approximately 40 percent of PC shipments in 2018 compared with representing 49 percent of shipments in 2014,” Gartner senior principal analyst Mikako Kitagawa said. “The market stabilization in 2018 was attributed to consistent business PC growth, driven by Windows 10 upgrade.”

    Permalink to story.

  2. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 2,825   +2,672

    "Due to processor shortages and the trade war with China, shipments declined during the last quarter and across the whole of 2018."

    The "trade war" has been going on since the mid-90's - its just that now the US is fighting back. Tying that to the overall decline to PC shipments is pure opinion with no facts to back it up.

    "Only Lenovo, which moved ahead of HP to become the quarter’s top vendor, and third place Dell showed growth compared to Q4 2017."

    Gee, I wonder if has anything to do with the fact they have the most affordable laptops that are actually worth owning?
  3. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 5,710   +4,046

    The other issue is this constant demand for "growth". A company that sells 250,000 widgets, pays off it's debts and returns 15% profit is not a loser, in fact, any company that makes a profit after expenses is a successful business. Growth is not guaranteed and the mark of a successful company is one that manages cost and still manages to break even or make a slight profit even in the leanest of times.
  4. p51d007

    p51d007 TS Evangelist Posts: 2,069   +1,322

    "Blaming" the trade war is like blaming the trade war for Apple/Samsung and many other phone makers
    sales slump. THEY ARE TOO EXPENSIVE, and, current-2 year old products still work.
    My 5 year old laptop still kicks along. Best thing I did 4 years ago to REALLY speed it up was to install
    an SSD. It's still lightning fast for what I use it for (mostly photoshop).
  5. Impudicus

    Impudicus TS Addict Posts: 159   +119

    Those finally falling RAM prices, cpu shortages.... and I can't help but want to blame intel for gouging every penny out of people while AMD was out the picture. Supply and demand, blah blah, thing is they priced many gamers out of the pc market into the console market. Make a few dollars today, loose more later. When intel dropped prices 40% when Ryzen was released, well, you connect the dots.
  6. Theinsanegamer

    Theinsanegamer TS Evangelist Posts: 1,617   +1,829

    Sure, it was shortages and a "trade war" that hasnt seemed to have actually done anything. Couldnt have anything to do with rampant price increases and stagnant technology. Why would someone upgrade from an ivy bridge CPU, for instance, to ryzen or kaby lake unless they had a motherboard or CPU failure?

    We are at the point, nay, past the point of tech being good enough. The market will shrink down to replacement rate unless some magical new tech comes out that goes high in demand.
    Underdog likes this.
  7. loki1944

    loki1944 TS Maniac Posts: 224   +146

    I'm sure part of this is the stagnation of hardware in the past decade, particularly CPUs and RAM; and for the average person they don't give a rat's *** about games, so even a CPU from 2009 is still enough or overkill for most tasks. Same deal with RAM. And when you don't care about some sort of professional work or faster loading times, a SATA II board or just plain 5400/7200 RPM HDDs is also plenty.
    Underdog and cliffordcooley like this.
  8. Underdog

    Underdog TS Addict Posts: 112   +61

    As you say gentlemen, growth, greed, and lack of real advances in the basic technology are behind it. And in my case Cost. I am using a 6 year old home built desktop that is just beginning to get a bit flakey at times. I don't play games on it, just the usual stuff that is not intensive. I started planning a partial upgrade but apart from RAM, there is nothing more I can do because my CPU socket is now obsolete. I did a costing for a complete new build and was shocked to find I would have take a performance downgrade to meet the building budget I had last time. I also have to be careful selecting a processor because the latest ones won't work with W7.
    Serious gamers or video editors must have really deep pockets.
    loki1944 and senketsu like this.
  9. Bullwinkle M

    Bullwinkle M TS Booster Posts: 155   +80

    Trade war has nothing to do with it

    It's the Windows Spyware, the Lock In, Extortionary Licensing Agreements, Blackmail, DRM and turning the "Personal" Computer into an endless/expensive treadmill to nowhere

    My Sandy Bridge suddenly began getting a bit flakey (like Underdogs) and then the power supply totally failed yesterday

    I won't buy the abominations they are selling today and I wouldn't want one if you gave it to me

    Instead, I'll keep buying power supplies until the "Personal" Computer is just a fond memory
    loki1944 likes this.
  10. lazer

    lazer TS Addict Posts: 261   +60

    I really feel the PC buying public is saturated. I have a PC running win7, works fine, does what I need. Why should I buy another one?

    I would rather save my money to spend on other things....
    loki1944 likes this.
  11. Underdog

    Underdog TS Addict Posts: 112   +61

    Ah, but don't you see?????????? That wouldn't fit with Microsoft's grand plan.

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