Lenovo, HP, and Dell increase PC sales despite unit shipment decline
The processor shortage that tamped down PC sales in the fourth quarter of 2018 continues to have ripple effects as sales of desktops and notebooks continue to fall. However, the top global PC vendors — Lenovo, HP, and Dell — are gaining market share and increasing shipments at the expense of their smaller rivals.
The Lowdown: Analyst firm Gartner reports global PC shipments fell in the first three months of 2019 by 4.6% year over year. The decline came as component supplies — most notably, Intel Core and Xeon processors — began to return to normal. Analysts expected a rebound as pent-up demand for PCs — particularly among business buyers trying to refresh Windows machines as Windows 7 approaches its end of life — would result in available inventory being snapped up.
The Details: According to Gartner, Lenovo maintained its global leadership by increasing quarterly sales by 6.9% to expand its market share to 22.5%. HP is in second place, with
Other PC vendors, though, saw modest to sharp declines in sales. Apple sales were down 2.5%, Asus sales dropped 7.3%, and Acer’s fell 13.2%. All other PC vendors saw a collective decline of 20.8%.
In the United States, the second-largest PC market in the world, sales fell sharply across the board due mostly to slack consumer demand. The U.S. PC market collectively declined by 6.3% in the first quarter. HP saw sales fall 4.7%, Dell’s were down 7.1%, Apple’s dipped 3.5%, and Lenovo’s dropped 7.5%.
Overall, PC vendors shipped more than 58 million units worldwide, down from 61.3 million in the first quarter of 2018. In the U.S., vendors shipped a total of 11 million PCs, down from 11.7 million in the same period in 2018.
The Impact: The top three vendors expanding PC sales globally is due to two factors. First, strong business demand around the world is keeping the top three vendors and their partners busy. Second, the top three vendors were able to flip their supply chains to alternative component vendors, enabling them to recover their supply chains and inventories faster than their smaller competitors.
Demand remains strong among business buyers as they continue to refresh their PCs to Windows 10 as Microsoft shuts down support for Windows 7. While Gartner says the refresh will drive PC sales higher through 2019, it forecasts the Windows 10 refresh surge will not continue into 2020.