Gartner and IDC confirmed that the PC market barely grew in Q3 2021, with PC makers selling 85.4 million units in the quarter. That’s just 2.3 percent growth year-over-year.
Both firms credited the slowdown to the end of the COVID-19 pandemic buying spree, which was always thought to be temporary, and ongoing supply chain issues. Which is also hopefully just temporary.
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“Business PC demand remained strong, led by economic recovery in key regions and the return of some workers to offices,” Gartner’s Mikako Kitagawa said. “However, business PC growth was concentrated in the desktop segment as semiconductor shortages continued to constrain laptop shipments.”
“After a year of accelerated buying driven by the shift to remote work and learning, there’s also been a comparative slowdown in PC spending and that has caused some softening of the U.S. PC market today,” IDC’s Neha Mahajan added. “Yet, supply clearly remains behind demand in key segments with inventory still below normal levels.”
Note: As you may recall, a third analyst firm, Canalys, also weighed in on PC sales in the third quarter. It reported that PC makers sold 84 million units, with the market growing 5 percent YOY. Those figures are not included in any calculations here, though they are at least in line.
Lenovo was again the world’s largest maker of PCs, with about 19.9 million units sold and 23.3 percent market share. HP came in second with 17.6 million units sold and 22.4 percent market share. And Dell (15.2 million units), Apple (7.4 million units), and Acer (6 million units) rounded out the top five.
A few additional points on the competition.
The Apple Mac now accounts for 8.7 percent of all PCs sold worldwide, capping off a hugely successful year following the introduction of the Apple Silicon M1 chipset.
And Gartner reported that Chromebook shipments fell by 17 percent in the quarter due to decreased demand in education. “This was the first double-digit year-over-year decline in Chromebook sales since its introduction to the market in 2011,” the firm said.