Global PC shipments falls 5.7% y-o-y in 3Q16, says Gartner

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KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 12): Worldwide PC shipments fell 5.7% year-on-year to 68.9 million units in the third quarter of 2016 (3Q16), according to preliminary results by information technology research and advisory company Gartner Inc.

In a statement today, Gartner said this was the eighth consecutive quarter of PC shipment decline, the longest duration of decline in the history of the PC industry.

It said PC manufacturers faced many challenges, which included weak back-to-school demand, and ongoing low demand in the consumer market, especially in emerging markets.

Gartner principal analyst Mikako Kitagawa said there were two fundamental issues that have impacted PC market results: the extension of the lifetime of the PC caused by the excess of consumer devices, and weak PC consumer demand in emerging markets.

"According to our 2016 personal technology survey, the majority of consumers own, and use, at least three different types of devices in mature markets.

"Among these devices, the PC is not a high priority device for the majority of consumers, so they do not feel the need to upgrade their PCs as often as they used to. Some may never decide to upgrade to a PC again," she said.

In emerging markets, PC penetration was low, but consumers are not keen to own PCs, said Kitagawa.

She said consumers in emerging markets primarily use smartphones or phablets for their computing needs, and they don't find the need to use a PC as much as consumers in mature markets.

Kitagawa said the PC market continues to consolidate, as the top six vendors combined for a record high 78% of PC shipments in 3Q16.

She said Lenovo continued to be the worldwide market leader based on preliminary PC shipments, but HP Inc is nearly tied for this top spot, and these rankings could change when final shipment results are published.

"Lenovo has recorded six consecutive quarters of year-over-year shipment declines, while the nearest competitors, HP Inc and Dell, have recorded shipment growth since 2Q16," she said.