Gartner reports PC industry’s weakest growth since 2002, rival IDC says down 0.4%

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Gartner reports PC industry's weakest growth since 2002, rival IDC says down 0.4%

Richmond (VA) – In Q4’2008, total worldwide PC shipments were 78.1 million units, a figure 1.1% above that in Q4’2007 showing the weakest growth rate in the industry since 2002. United States markets were hit hardest on the weakened economy, though worldwide effects were seen as well.

A similar IDC report is quoted as saying that worldwide PC shipments are down 0.4% in Q4’2008, according to The Wall Street Journal.

A principal analyst for Gartner’s Client Computing Markets, Mika Kitagawa, said, “The US experienced steeper than expected shipment declines due to the recession. The Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region was also affected by the economic slowdown across key countries. Asia-Pacific recorded the worst shipment growth since Gartner started its PC statistics research. Latin America met expectations, but its growth was much lower than in the past.”

Mini-notebook sales outpaced mobile PC growth in 2008, due mostly to sales promotions. PC revenues saw record declines as average selling prices (ASPs) decreased due to the availability of related products in similar markets – such as mini-notebooks.

In the US, PC shipments were down 10% in Q4’2008, the worst decline since 2001. Other worldwide markets were down, but not as much. HP managed to increase slightly, though its growth rate was at its lowest since merging with Compaq in 2003. Acer continued its growth trend with an industry-bucking 31.1% increase in shipments driven primarily by low-priced mini-notebooks. Dell and Lenovo both showed growth in Asia-Pacific and emerging markets, but the US economy took its toll on their bottom line. Lenovo’s shipments declined for the first time since 2006.

See DigiTimes for a breakdown by units shipped and market shares.