Worldwide PC Sales Decline on Stronger Dollar, Windows 10 Release


IDC, the International Data Corporation, estimates global PC sales tumbled to 66.1 million units in the second quarter of 2015, falling at a sharper Y/Y clip than the first quarter’s 6.7% and about 1% faster than expected. Gartner is slightly less harsh, estimating shipments fell 9.5% to 68.4 million.

The main reasons for the decline are: inventory reductions ahead of the Windows 10 launch set for July 29th, a strong dollar that has led to higher overseas prices and tough Y/Y comps caused by the 2014 boost in business PC sales caused by the end of Windows XP support. With tablet sales under pressure as well, tablet cannibalization is less of a factor than in the past, but rising smartphone/tablet usage still appears to be taking a toll on PC upgrade rates.

Gartner sees full-year PC sales falling 4.4%. IDC still expects low-to-mid single-digit declines in 2H15, before volumes stabilize in future years. It sees the Windows 10 launch going “relatively well,” but cautions Microsoft’s decision to provide free upgrades to Windows 7/8 users will limit its impact on PC sales.

Continuing a recent trend, market leaders grabbed share from smaller rivals. IDC estimates #1 Lenovo’s share rose to 20.3% from 19.4% a year ago, #2 HP’s to 18.5% from 18.2%, and #3 Dell’s to 14.5% from 14%. Acer and Asus are respectively given 6.6% and 6.5% shares

Curiously, IDC has Apple ranked #4 globally, with its share rising to 7.8% from 5.9% via 5.1 million Mac shipments (could imply a 15%+ revenue share), but Gartner doesn’t have the company in its top-5. IDC and Gartner respectively assign Apple 13.5% and 12.7% U.S. shares. In the past, IDC’s Mac shipment estimates have been notably different from the quarterly figures Apple would later report.

Near-term expectations for PC sales are already quite low, following Intel’s Q1 warning, AMD’s Q2 warning, Micron’s June 25 results/guidance, and plenty of other negative news.


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