Statistics released by market research company Gartner Inc. show that personal computer shipments have decreased by 9.5 percent globally in the second fiscal quarter of 2015, and more than 11 percent on an year by year comparison. At the same time, the company doesn’t expect the upcoming release of Windows 10 to significantly boost the market.
According to Gartner numbers quoted by Bloomberg, more than 68.4 million PC’s have been shipped out during Q2 by vendors, which is a sizeable decrease from the 75.6 million in the same period of 2014. This is the harshest decline registered since Q3 2013. In the United States, sales have also fallen by between 5.8 percent and 15.1 percent.
Even if it would be easy to point this on the growing popularity of tablets and mobile devices, who manage to encompass more and more desktop-like capabilities each year, most of the decline is actually caused by corporations who are spending less on PC upgrades. It is true that middle class consumer preference is shifting rapidly to mobile devices, but this is far from signifying the death of the desktop.
Gartner analysts, interpreting their results, have said that such a verdict could hardly be any more wrong, pointing instead towards an extremely low overall growth and market stagnation, due to the overflow of different gadgets and devices which can take on characteristics previously specific to desktops.
At the same time, the upcoming Windows 10 release is unlikely to offer a significant boost to the PC market. Besides the fact that Microsoft’s last version of its operating system is marketed as a truly multi-platform experience, Windows 10 requirements aren’t significantly higher than those of Windows 7 or 8, and the availability of it as free upgrade for owners of those respective version will likely drive down the need to also upgrade the hardware together with it.
This PC shipments decline is hitting hardest on microprocessor manufacturers, such as Micron or AMD, which have lowered sales forecasts accordingly and are experiencing mild stock price falls. AMD stocks are at their lowest value since November 2012, closing on Friday at $1.95 per share.
Lenovo holds the highest share of the desktop market, shipping almost 20 percent of all global shipments, or 13.5 milion units during Q2 2015, tallying a 6.8 percent drop compared to Q2 2014. Hewlett-Packard has had an even higher drop, with its 11.9 million unit shipments being down 9.5 percent year over year.
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