PC shipments across the globe are down, according to competing research by IDC and Gartner.
According to Needham, Massachusetts-based IDC, shipments dropped 15% in Q3, corresponding to global shipments totaling 74.3 million units. However, IDC says shipment volumes remain well above pre-pandemic levels when PC volumes were largely driven by commercial refreshes due to the looming end of support for Windows 7.
“Consumer demand has remained muted though promotional activity from the likes of Apple and other players has helped soften the fall and reduce channel inventory by a couple weeks across the board,” said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC’s Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. “Supply has also reacted to the new lows by reducing orders with Apple being the only exception as their third quarter supply increased to make up for lost orders stemming from the lockdowns in China during the second quarter.”
Meanwhile, Gartner pegs the Q3 decline at 19.5%, totaling 68 million units. This is the steepest market decline since Gartner began tracking the PC market in the mid-1990s and the fourth consecutive quarter of year-over-year decline.
“This quarter’s results could mark a historic slowdown for the PC market,” said Mikako Kitagawa, Director Analyst at Gartner. “While supply chain disruptions have finally eased, high inventory has now become a major issue given weak PC demand in both the consumer and business markets. Back to school sales ended with disappointing results despite massive promotions and price drops, due to a lack of need as many consumers had purchased new PCs in the last two years. On the business side, geopolitical and economic uncertainties led to more selective IT spending, and PCs were not at the top of the priority list.”
Gartner says the U.S. PC market declined 17.3% in the third quarter of 2022, the fifth consecutive quarter of year-over-year shipment decline. Slowed laptop sales drove the overall U.S. market down, but the desktop market showed modest growth driven by pent up demand among businesses as well as public sector purchases.
“Inflation is the biggest concern in the U.S. market, but smaller businesses are showing relative optimism about macroeconomic conditions,” said Kitagawa. “While laptop demand among large enterprises sharply decreased in the third quarter of 2022, small and midsize businesses did not show as steep of a drop.”
The EMEA PC market decreased 26.4% year-over-year in the third quarter, reaching 17 million units – the steepest decline among all regions. This is the third negative quarter for the EMEA PC market following a boom at the start of the pandemic.
Excluding Japan, the Asia Pacific market declined 16.6% year-over-year, largely due to slowed shipments in China.
Further details will be available to Gartner clients through a report entitled, “PC Quarterly Statistics Worldwide by Region.”
The data demonstrate to channel partners the continuing need to differentiate their services with advanced technologies.