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Massive decline for global PC shipments

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Worldwide PC shipments totalled 75,7-million units in the fourth quarter of 2015, a 8.3 percent decline from the fourth quarter of 2014, according to preliminary results by Gartner. For the year, 2015 PC shipments totalled 288,7-million units, an 8% decline from 2014.
“The fourth quarter of 2015 marked the fifth consecutive quarter of worldwide PC shipment decline,” says Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner. “Holiday sales did not boost the overall PC shipments, hinting at changes to consumers’ PC purchase behavior. On the business side, Windows 10 generally received positive reviews, but as expected, Windows 10 migration was minor in the fourth quarter as many organizations were just starting their testing period.
“All regions registered a decrease in shipments. Currency devaluation issues continued to impact EMEA, Latin America and Japan,” Kitagawa adds. “Collectively EMEA, Japan and Latin America saw their markets reduced by nearly 10% in 2015.”
Gartner’s outlook for PC shipments in 2016 is for a decline of 1% compared with 2015, with the potential for a soft recovery in late 2016. Kitagawa says the PC market is still in the middle of structural change which will reduce the PC installed base in the next few years.
In the fourth quarter of 2015, Lenovo registered a worldwide PC shipment decline for the third consecutive quarter. However, Lenovo declined less than the industry average, and it extended its lead in the market. Lenovo accounted for 20,3% of worldwide PC shipments in the fourth quarter of 2015. Lenovo did particularly well in North America to offset shipment declines in EMEA, Latin America and Japan.
HP’s fourth quarter PC shipments declined in the worldwide market and across all regions. The decline in the regions were mostly the same or better than the regional average except for the US market. The steep decline in the US market was in part because of unusually high shipment volume in the fourth quarter of 2014, led by low-priced Bing notebooks targeting holiday sales.
Dell’s PC shipments declined across all regions except Japan where the company grew by single digits compared to the fourth quarter of 2014. Although Dell’s shipments declined in EMEA and the US, Dell declined less than the regional averages.
PC shipments in EMEA totalled 22,5-million units in the fourth quarter of 2015, a decline of 16% year-over-year.
In Western Europe, some countries, such as the UK, showed solid Windows 10 promotions during the holiday season, and shipments in the French market remained good. Overall high inventory levels plagued Western Europe. In Eastern Europe, the PC market experienced modest growth in low-single digits, driven by consumer demand for new hybrid devices and PC replacements to move to Windows 10.
The Asia/Pacific PC market reached 26-million units in the fourth quarter of 2015, a 1,5% decline from the fourth quarter of 2014. Buyers did not rush to replace with newer PC models with Windows 10. PC vendors looked for profitability over shipment volume, focusing on segments such as gaming PCs; bundling of desktops with large monitor screens and ultramobile device models. Preliminary results indicate that the China PC market declined 4,7% in the fourth quarter of 2015 compared with a year ago.
For the year, worldwide PC shipments declined for the fourth consecutive year, which started in 2012 with the launch of tablets. “In 2015, local currency devaluation also played a key role in the market conditions,” says Kitagawa. “EMEA, Latin America and Japan faced a major impact from the devaluation, showing double-digit declines in 2015. In contrast, the US and Asia/Pacific experienced minor declines of almost flat to low single-digit declines as the currency issue did not affect these regions.”
The top six vendors accounted for more of the overall PC market in 2015. These vendors accounted for 73,1% of shipments in 2015, up from 70,4% of shipments in 2014. Lenovo maintained the number one position, accounting for 19,8% of PC shipments, followed by HP with 18,2% market share. Dell rounded out the top three vendors, accounting for 13,6% of shipments.