Dell back on top in US market but PC shipments continue slide in Q1

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PC Q1 Shipments were in line with conservative expectations for a decline of 11.3%, and anticipated a relatively weak environment during the first half of 2016 as Windows 10 enterprise upgrades largely remained in pilot phase while consumer demand remains weak. The volatility in stocks, commodities, and currencies also helped depress shipments. Inventory reductions in the channel, which were a headwind through much of 2015, seem to be wrapping up. Similarly, some rebound in economic conditions should support both commercial and consumer activity going forward. Nevertheless, channels, vendors, and users remain cautious about new purchases. Overall, Asia-Pacific and EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) performed slightly better than forecast, while the Americas pulled down worldwide results. “In the short term, the PC market must still grapple with limited consumer interest and competition from other infrastructure upgrades in the commercial market,” said Jay Chou, research manager at IDC. “Nevertheless, IDC still projects total business IT spending to grow compared to 2015, and as we head toward the end of 2016 things should start picking up in terms of Windows 10 pilots turning into actual PC purchases.” PC shipments to the US fell 5.8% to 13.6 million units in 1Q. PC channels remained challenged with aging inventory although inventory churn has reportedly improved throughout the last two quarters. Market inhibitors that were present in 4Q15 lingered through 1Q16. These issues included softened demand due to global economic concerns, the Windows 10 free upgrade path stalling some consumer PC purchases, and increased attrition towards detachables. “Demand for PCs in the US remains sluggish. However, we should be entering a period of reprieve,” said IDC research director for devices and displays Linn Huang. “Peak corporate and education buying seasons have historically started in the second quarter. With some IT buyers thinking about early Windows 10 transitions and with the potential continued ascent of Chromebooks in US K-12, the PC market should experience a modest rebound in the coming months.” Overall, Lenovo maintained its top global rank for the quarter with US growth in excess of 20%. However, the company faced a challenging quarter in all other markets with international shipments declining 12.5% from the prior year, bringing total worldwide volume down 8.5% from a year ago. HP Inc. remained the number 2 vendor as it navigated its separation from HP Enterprise during the quarter. The company struggled with some inventory issues in North America and a continued slow market in Latin America, with total worldwide shipments declining nearly 11% from the prior year. Dell remained the number 3 vendor globally, but it overtook HP Inc. for the first place ranking in its home market for the first time since the third quarter of 2009, ending a run of 25 consecutive quarters with HP Inc. at the top of the US PC market. Dell’s US PC shipments rose 4.2% year-over-year to 3.48 million ? good for a 25.6% share. HP Inc’s PC shipments to the US fell 14.1% to 3.44 million units (25.3% share). Apple took the fourth spot worldwide and continued to outperform the market, thanks to solid growth in North America. Apple’s Mac shipments rose 5.6% year-over-year to nearly 1.8 million (13.0% market share). Asus declined 8.3% from a year ago and dropped to the number 5 position. North America still saw decent uptake, but the vendor faced challenges elsewhere, especially EMEA. ]]>

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