The deteriorating worldwide economy had a negative impact on PC shipments in the third quarter of 2008, according to IDC market analysts, but HP managed to retain its leadership position while Dell came in second.
The overall market grew 15.8 percent year over year, according to IDC, which was slightly less than projected. Sales of low-cost portable PCs are having the biggest impact on the sales, according to the company’s findings.
“The proliferation of low-cost portable PCs coincided perfectly with market conditions,” said Jay Chou, research analyst with IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker. “As more low-cost models enter the fray, a new pecking order may emerge among vendors as the market leans toward notebooks with ever-declining prices.”
IDC reported sluggish growth in the U.S. market, with increased sales of low-cost notebook PCs helping to keep the quarter in positive territory. Although the competitive landscape remains unchanged, according to IDC, Dell and Apple outperformed the rest of the market. The PC markets in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa performed better than average, driven by strong demand for mainstream notebook PCs.
HP retained its grip on the number-one spot by registering 14.9 percent growth in annual shipments, despite the recent downturn in the U.S. economy. The company shipped more than 15 million units in the quarter to grab an 18.8 percent share of the market. Dell’s business grew by only 11.4 percent, but the company benefitted from its growing retail presence (the company got its start, of course, by selling computers direct). Dell managed to ship more than 11 million units and enjoys a 14.2 percent market share.
Third-place Acer shipped nearly as many computers as Dell—just over 10 million—despite focusing primarily on portables. This earned the company a 12.5-percent share of the worldwide market. In the U.S., however, the company registered a 3.2-percent decline in PC shipments year over year when combined with Gateway’s results (Acer acquired Gateway in 2007).
Lenovo held onto the number four slot, holding 7.4 percent of the worldwide marekt despite achieving anemic annual growth of just 7.7 percent. The company shipped less than six million PCs in the third quarter. Toshiba rounds out the top five, having shipped just over 3.5 million units to achieve a market share of 4.6 percent.