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IDC Forecasts PC Shipments to Fall by Double Digits In 2013

Worldwide PC shipments are expected to fall by -10.1% in 2013, slightly below the previous projection of -9.7%, and by far the most severe yearly contraction on record, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker.

IDC nottes that Interest in PCs has remained limited, leading to little indication of positive growth beyond replacement of existing systems. Total shipments are expected to decline by an additional -3.8% in 2014 before turning slightly positive in the longer term. At these rates, total PC shipments will remain just above 300 million during the forecast – barely ahead of 2008 volumes. Even in emerging markets – a primary growth engine of the PC market – shipments are projected to decline in 2014 and recover by only a few percent during the forecast.

IDC does report that the commercial market is faring notably better than the consumer market in 2013 with shipments declining by -5% year over year compared to nearly -15% for consumer markets. The relative stability is due to a mix of more stable PC investment planning, smaller impact from tablets, and the necessity of replacing of Windows XP systems before the end of support planned for 2014. However, they project that the long-term outlook for the two markets is not significantly different, with a small decline projected for both consumer and commercial segments in 2014 and near flat growth in the longer term.

“Perhaps the chief concern for future PC demand is a lack of reasons to replace an older system,” says Jay Chou, Senior Research Analyst, Worldwide Quarterly PC Trackers at IDC. “While IDC research finds that the PC still remains the primary computing device – for example, PCs are used more hours per day than tablets or phones – PC usage is nonetheless declining each year as more devices become available. And despite industry efforts, PC usage has not moved significantly beyond consumption and productivity tasks to differentiate PCs from other devices. As a result, PC lifespans continue to increase, thereby limiting market growth.”

“The emergence of 2-in-1 devices designed to function in both clamshell and slate configurations – many of which will run Windows – along with Windows-based tablets themselves, is expected to provide some new volume for the Windows platform as well as the PC vendors and other parts of the traditional PC ecosystem in coming years,” says Loren Loverde, Vice President Worldwide Quarterly PC Trackers. “The Windows-based tablet market (covered in IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker) is expected to grow to 39.3 million units in 2017 from less than 7.5 million in 2013 and less than 1 million in 2011. However, relative to a PC market size of roughly 300 million units, these Windows tablets would add just a couple percent a year relative to PC growth. Even so, these Windows devices are projected to account for 10% of a combined PC & Windows Tablet market by 2016 – making them an important growth segment for the PC ecosystem.”

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarter PC Tracker, November 2013

* Forecast data

See Table and Taxonomy Notes below.

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarter PC Tracker, November 2013

* Forecast data

Table Note: Mature Markets include U.S., Western Europe, Japan, and Canada. Emerging Markets includes Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan), Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa.

Taxonomy Note: PCs include Desktop, Mini Notebook and other Portable PCs which possess non-detachable keyboards, and do not include handhelds or Tablets such as the Apple iPad or Android Tablets

IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker gathers PC market data in more than 80 countries by vendor, form factor, brand, processor brand and speed, sales channel and user segment. The research includes historical and forecast trend analysis as well as price band and installed base data. For more information, or to subscribe to the research, visit
http://www.idc.com

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