Sales of PC and business computers around the world are slowing as post-pandemic demand begins to wane, new data showed.
Global PC sales reached 84.1 million units during the third quarter of 2021, Gartner reported, a modest increase, but still the lowest level in some time.
Gartner’s Q3 2021 data showed a 1% increase compared to the same period in 2020, perhaps a sign that the market is about to slow down once again.
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slowdown in sales
Gartner’s findings were supported by similar figures from fellow analyst house IDC, which claimed Q3 2021 PC shipments totaled 86.7 million units, up 3.9% over the previous year.
IDC said the slowdown was an unavoidable effect of global chip shortages, affecting not just PC makers, but technology firms of all kinds of industries.
“The PC industry continues to be disrupted by supply and logistical challenges and unfortunately these issues have not improved much in recent months,” said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for mobile and consumer device trackers at IDC.
“Given the current circumstances, we are seeing some sellers re-prioritize shipments between different markets, allowing emerging markets to maintain growth momentum while some mature markets appear to slow down.”
Gartner noted that the drop in sales could be due to a decline in education and the consumer sector, as the reopening of schools around the world means there is no need to continue to support learning at home.
The firm included Chromebooks in its figures for the first time, but a drop in demand from the education sector saw sales of lightweight devices fall 17% in the third quarter of 2021 – the first time Chromebook sales hit double digits year-on-year. – The year declined. The devices were launched in 2011.
Its data found Lenovo retained the top spot as the world’s largest PC vendor, with Q3 2021 shipments of 19.9 million units giving it a 23.7% market share, up 1.8% from the previous year.
HP came in second, with its 17.6 million shipments giving it a 20.9% market share, with its sales down 5.8% in 2020. Dell saw a 26.5% increase in shipments and took up 18.1% of the market, followed by Apple (8.6%) and Acer and Asus tied closely at 7.2 percent.
“With schools reopening around the world, there was no urgent need for PCs and Chromebooks to support education at home,” said Mikako Kitagawa, research director at Gartner.
“Demand for Business PCs remained strong due to economic recovery in key areas and the return of some employees to offices,” Kitagawa said. “However, business PC growth was concentrated in the desktop segment as semiconductor shortages continued to disrupt laptop shipments. Shortages of these components are expected to continue through the first half of 2022.
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