Things haven’t improved for the overall PC market over the past few years. The latest data from market research firms IDC and Gartner reveals that the PC market fell for the fifth straight year in 2016. In Q4 2016, IDC and Gartner estimate that the PC market declined by 1.6 percent and 3.7 percent respectively. Both have slightly different ways of presenting their data, but it does paint a similar picture.
According to Gartner, 269.7 million PCs were sold in 2016 and 72.6 million particularly in the final quarter of the year. This represents a 6.2 percent decline to 2015 and makes 2016 the fifth straight year of decline. IDC’s data shows that Q4 2016 sales were down 1.6 percent year-over-year while annual shipments were down 5.7 percent.
For comparison, total PC sales stood at 365 million units back in 2011. While one can’t say that 269.7 million units aren’t a whole lot of PCs, consider the fact that 100 million units have been wiped from the total figures over five years.
“The broad PC market has been static as technology improvements have not been sufficient to drive real market growth,” says Gartner principal analyst Mikako Kitagawa, adding that “stagnation in the PC market continued into the fourth quarter of 2016 as holiday sales were generally weak due to the fundamental change in PC buying behavior.”
Lenovo remained the leader in overall PC shipments while HP and Dell came in second and third place respectively. While the top three gained market share last year, Asus and Acer both lost it.
PC manufacturers were out in full force at the Consumer Electronics Show 2017 in Las Vegas last week with some great new products. Whether or not they will be enough to end the overall decline remains to be seen.