In the latest Gartner report on worldwide PC shipments, the analyst house noted that sales of laptops and desktops slumped by 1.4 per cent in the first quarter of 2018, marking the 14th straight quarter that shipments have declined.
This won't really come as a major surprise to regular readers. With phones and tablets becoming capable of handling tasks a PC would normally be needed for, and with older machines being more than up to the task of handling everyday office work, hardware refreshes aren't as essential as they once were.
Gartner said a number of factors had been responsible for the latest shipments slump, including lower PC demand in China, the delayed release of new PC models and component shortages coupled with rising prices for materials stymieing the PC market.
"The major contributor to the decline came from China, where unit shipments declined 5.7 per cent year over year," explained Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner.
"This was driven by China's business market, where some state-owned and large enterprises postponed new purchases or upgrades, awaiting new policies and officials' reassignments after the session of the National People's Congress in early March.
"In the first quarter of 2018, there was some inventory carryover from the fourth quarter of 2017," she added. "At the same time, vendors were cautious in overstocking due to the upcoming release of new models in the second quarter of 2018 with Intel's new eighth-generation core processors."
HP Inc tops the board as the world's leading PC supplier and even 2.8 per cent growth between the first quarter of 2017 and 2018.
Lenovo took the silver position and Dell took bronze, with both firms seeing some growth in shipments. The likes of Acer and Asus were not so successful, with shipments falling by 8.6 per cent and 12.5 per cent, respectively.
The minor but persistent decline in PC shipments has often lead to people claiming the PC is dead, but there still appears to be some demand for desktops and laptops from some of the biggest brands. µ
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