PC Market Shrinks, People Want More Tablets

This time, however, the reason may not be another looming recession, but the simple fact that the netbook is on its way out and PC manufacturers did not respond quickly enough to a changing market environment.

According to Gartner, the overall market lost 1.1% and dropped to 84.3 million shipped PCs in the first quarter of this year. HP and Dell lost slightly, but Acer dropped by 12.2% from 12.4 million PCs to 10.9 million. Lenovo and Toshiba were able to increase their sales by 16.6 and 5.3%, respectively. Gartner indicated that Acer is especially vulnerable as the company is especially dependent on netbook and mini-notebook shipments. It is quite apparent that the iPad has impacted the netbook market, but Gartner said that it is unclear whether this is a short-term or a long-term trend.

In the U.S., Apple gained 18.9% and sold 1.5 million PCs as compared to less than 1.3 million in the quarter one year ago. The only other manufacturer that was able to increase its shipments in the U.S. was Toshiba (+10.9%). The overall PC market contracted by 6.1% to 16.1 million units, according to Gartner. It is quite apparent that Apple has found a way to extend its product line with the iPad, which does not affect its own product sales, but apparently hurts traditional PC vendors.      

  • plum
    This is silly. Who buys prebuilts anymore? damn casuals
  • stingstang
    "It is quite apparent that Apple has found a way to extend its product line with the iPad, which does not affect its own product sales, but apparently hurts traditional PC vendors."

    So apple introduced a new iPad, which increased sales somehow? That's crazy talk, Douggy.
  • galland
    Apple sells waymore PCs than a year ago, so... how about comparing Intel/AMD Q1 sales? I refrained from buying a Sandy Bridge Intel 1st because of the USB bug and then decided to wait for Z68
  • dimamu15
    what can i say, people are stupid.
    tablets? really? more toys for tech declined errr...
  • memadmax
    It would be nice if you could install MacOS on a regular PC ala Windows... that way more people can access this OS and put more work into it...
  • K2N hater
    1.1% means nothing. Even though Acer lost a lot of market share we expect them to recover rather quickly as their new tablets are released.
  • nforce4max
    Modern tablets are more for casual use or as toys rather than what they were originally for. One such example of what a tablet should be is the compaq tc1100. Not only it can be a pure slate but also docks with a station for desk work.
  • schmich
    "but apparently hurts traditional PC vendors"
    I highly doubt people buy an iPad instead of a PC. Just because it's also a computing device doesn't mean it directly affects one another.
  • proxy711
    No thanks, I'll skip this fad like i did magic cards, yoyo's, pogs(sp?) and 3D (for the 3rd or 4th time).

    I guess im a power user. Why use a tablet when i can use a laptop. why use laptop (besides for mobile reasons) when i can use a self built PC?
  • kinggraves
    How many of these "tablets r great" opinion pieces is Doug going to write this week? Netbook sales declined slightly, that does NOT indicate that they're going to disappear completely. Everything has it's market, and netbooks are still far superior to tablets in actual productivity.

    Desktops and laptops have lost a lot of ground compared to where they were, however their extra size allows for a lot more hardware, so they will still have a place with gamers and other dedicated people who need the processing power or screen size. Smartphones and tablets, which are just smartphones with larger screens, are good for portable media and web browsing, but the lack of a physical keyboard prevents them from getting serious typing tasks accomplished. Netbooks have lost the sales of browsers and media fans, but they were never really made to handle HD media. You also can't argue with the price, considering netbooks still can hover around 300, whereas tablets hover more around 600.

    The market has diversified, but everything still has it's place. The near future has a lot of tablet/netbook hybrids, which blur the lines between these markets further, but the only thing that's really lost it's market space is portable media players. Smartphones and tablets have indeed made such devices obsolete for any reason other than price.