“The PC market continues to face many headwinds. The launch of Windows 8 had no impact on PC demand, especially as Ultramobile products were both limited in supply, as well as being priced too high,” said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner. “The holiday season mostly saw retailers clearing Windows 7 notebook inventory or driving volume of low-end notebooks. Furthermore, the increasing choice of tablets at decreasing price points no doubt became a favorite Christmas present ahead of PCs.”

“In the fourth quarter of 2012, mobile PC shipments decreased 11 percent while desktop PC shipments declined 6 percent year-on-year,” said Isabelle Durand, principal research analyst at Gartner. “However, all-in-one form factor models from Asus, Lenovo and HP look like a promising platform for the future.”

HP retained the No. 1 position in the fourth quarter of 2012, thanks to good results across all products in the professional PC segment. Dell performed weakly, losing nearly 2 percent share in the fourth quarter of 2012. Among the top five vendors, only Lenovo showed year-on-year growth and its strong performance in the quarter helped it displace Acer from the No. 2 position.

In the second half of 2012, the EMEA PC market experienced two consecutive quarters of decline, resulting in overall shipments for 2012 declining 2.8 percent from 2011. Western Europe lost another 10 percent of volume, indicating likely structural changes to the market rather than weak demand.

Table 3

Preliminary EMEA PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 4Q12 (Units)

Company
 

4Q12 Shipments
 

4Q12 Market Share (%)
 

4Q11 Shipments
 

4Q11 Market Share (%)
 

4Q12-4Q11 Growth (%)
HP   5,346,900   19.1   5,829,182   18.8   -8.3
Lenovo 3,087,629 11.0 2,386,877 7.7 29.4
Acer Group 3,015,318 10.7 3,532,612 11.4 -14.6
ASUS 2,794,279 10.0 3,233,350 10.4 -13.6
Dell 2,351,990 8.4 3,176,724 10.2 -26.0
Others 11,458,059 40.8 12,887,932 41.5 -11.1
Total   28,054,175   100.0   31,046,677   100.0   -9.6

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs and mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks but not media tablets such as the iPad.Data is based on the shipments selling into channels.

Source: Gartner (January 2013)
 

PC shipments in Asia/Pacific totaled 29.9 million units in the fourth quarter of 2012, a 1.8 percent decline from the fourth quarter of 2011. Vendors struggled to offer compelling products to convince buyers to upgrade and attract new buyers as consumers' interest continues to be on smartphones and tablets. The introduction of Windows 8 met with lukewarm response and availability was primarily on the higher-end models, which were priced beyond the mainstream price point for volume sales.

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