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PC Shipments Decline Again In Q1; Lenovo Solidifies Its Lead

Shanthi Rexaline

The two-quarter upturn seen in the PC market in the second and third quarters of 2018 proved to be short-lived, as shipments fell for the second straight quarter in the first quarter of 2019, market research firm Gartner reported Wednesday.

Hard Numbers

Worldwide PC shipments fell 4.6 percent year-over-year in the first quarter to 58.5 million units, steeper than the 4.3-percent drop witnessed in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Shipments had rebounded in the second quarter of 2018 following six straight quarters of declines, and the growth trend was sustained in the third quarter — although the magnitude of increase was only marginal.

Gartner attributed the weakness to a weak consumer market and the mix of available products. 

Interestingly, Chromebook shipments climbed by double digits in the first quarter of 2019. If Chromebook shipments were included, overall PC shipments may have declined by a more modest 3.5 percent.

Top 3 Buck Downtrend

Lenovo Group Limited (OTC: LNVGY), HP Inc (NYSE: HPQ) and Dell Technologies Inc (NYSE: DELL) maintained the top three positions in terms of market share in the first quarter, with shares of 22.5 percent, 21.9 percent and 17.6 percent, respectively.

This represents increases from the companies' year-ago market shares of 20.1 percent, 20.7 percent and 16 percent.

These PC vendors also reported year-over-year growth of 6.9 percent, 0.8 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively.

Apple's Unit Shipments Dip

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), though improving its market share year-over-year from 6.6 percent to 6.8 percent, reported unit shipments of 3.98 million units, down from 4.08 million units a year ago. 

Geographic Performance 

Gartner's numbers show that business PC demand remained strong.

Citing the weak mobile PC results in the quarter, the firm said a PC refresh cycle driven by Windows 10 may have peaked.

PC shipments fell the most in Latin America, while the U.S., Europe and Middle East as well as Asia-Pacific also witnessed declines. Japan bucked the downtrend, with a 6-percent increase.

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