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January 18, 2008

IDC Notes Solid Growth for Worldwide PC Market

IDC’s (News - Alert) Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker indicates that Worldwide PC shipments grew by 15.5% in the fourth quarter of 2007. Although the consumer and back-to-school rush that drove more than 20% growth in Q3 2007 subsided in EMEA, shipments continued to expand rapidly, outpacing growth in the prior five quarters. IDC says that other markets also performed well, with growth in the United States rising to 8.8%, and stronger than expected results in Japan and Latin America.

In 2007, total shipments reached 269.0 million units with growth of 14.3%. HP filled the top position, boasting volume of over 50.5 million. Dell (News - Alert) stood second with 40.0 million, and Acer moved into third at 21.2 million, excluding Gateway’s business for the first three quarters 24.6 million including Gateway (News - Alert)). Acer was closely followed by Lenovo with 20.2 million.
Loren Loverde, director of IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker said fourth quarter results show a very healthy PC market. She explained there is a lot happening with vendors repositioning their channels and going after new markets, while falling prices and portable adoption continue to drive volume.
Loverde said projections for the next couple years anticipate slower growth despite fourth quarter strength. IDC predicts that expectations will be reduced further due to rising concerns about economic growth, though it expects to see double digit growth through 2008 and probably 2009.
David Daoud, research manager, Personal Computing, said the better-than-expected growth in the U.S. market can be largely attributed to channel realignment among key players, particularity through the retail expansion of Dell and Acer.
He pointed out that the results do not reflect changes in the fundamentals of demand. Consumers are attracted by mobile platforms and are benefiting from the proliferation of channels and heightened competition. All these continue to bring prices down. In future,   demand could soften further if bad news over the economy persists and consumer confidence worsens.
Anuradha Shukla is a contributing editor for TMCnet, covering call centers, CRM and information technology. To see more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.
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