Worldwide PC shipments are expected to fall by -4,9% in 2015, a drop from the previous forecast of -3,3% – and they are expected to move downwards consistently until 2019.

This is the word fromChristopher Riley, CEO of The Notebook Company, who says: “We are seeing pressure on our laptop sales. Tablet sales are also under increasing strain from the bigger format smartphones and from phablets, which are fast growing market share.

“But we are picking up the slack with laptop rentals. More and more companies are currently turning to rentals, with some bigger companies renting hundreds of laptops for certain periods. Rentals now account for 15% of our turnover – which has wiped out the dip in the sale of laptops.”

While International Data Corporation (IDC) raised growth projections slightly for 2016 and 2017, fourth quarter 2014 results were 1,7% ahead of forecast – but economic and product changes will apparently “create a head wind in the short term”.

Total 2015 volume is projected at 293,1-million PCs, slipping a little further to 291,4-million in 2019. In value terms, the PC market reached $201-billion in 2014, a decline of -0,8%, and is expected to fall another -6,9% in 2015 with smaller declines in subsequent years, bringing the total to $175-billion by 2019.

Riley adds that one of the problems facing the PC market is the increasing competition from other devices such as phones and tablets. Wearable technology is also creating an additional challenge to overall PC spending.