PC demand still strong in Q2 amid signs market conditions may be cooling

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The surge in PC demand continued through the second quarter of 2021 (2Q21) despite global component shortages and logistics issues.

Worldwide shipments of traditional PCs, inclusive of desktops, notebooks, and workstations, reached 83.6 million units in 2Q21, up 13.2% from the second quarter of 2020, according to preliminary results from research firm IDC.

Elevated demand for PCs combined with shortages that greatly impacted the supply of notebooks led to desktop growth outpacing that of notebooks during the quarter.

“The PC market’s hot streak continued to drive heavy investments from the supply side including the entry of new vendors as well as additional spend from underdogs,” said Jitesh Ubrani research manager at IDC.

“And while the top 5 continue to drive volume, the smaller vendors have helped drive growth by offering unique features or niche designs.”

Though annual growth remains quite high, it has begun to taper off as the 13% growth rate in 2Q21 is far lower than the 55.9% growth in 1Q21 and 25.8% growth in 4Q20.

“The market faces mixed signals as far as demand is concerned,” said Neha Mahajan, senior research analyst at IDC. “With businesses opening back up, demand potential in the commercial segment appears promising. However, there are also early indicators of consumer demand slowing down as people shift spending priorities after nearly a year of aggressive PC buying.”

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