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PC Outlook Improves, Although Shipments Are Still Expected to Fall by -3.7% in 2014, According to IDC

Worldwide PC shipments are expected to fall by -3.7% in 2014, an improvement from the previous forecast of -6%, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker. PC shipments in emerging regions remain constrained by ongoing competition from alternative devices and a number of economic/political challenges. However, commercial demand and even a rekindling of consumer interest in mature markets helped to boost results for the first half of 2014 as well as the outlook for the rest of the year.

PC shipments in mature regions are now projected to grow by 5.6% in 2014 – the highest since 2010 – with both consumer and commercial segments showing positive growth. On the other hand, the outlook for emerging market has been lowered slightly to reflect reduced stability and economic conditions in Asia/Pacific, Latin America, and Central Europe, the Middle East and Africa (CEMA).

PC market drivers for the short term still mainly rest on business spending in mature markets. However, other variables have also appeared. In addition to the stimulus from the end of support for Windows XP, competition from tablets has declined as tablet penetration rises and volume has shifted to smaller sizes that are less competitive with PCs. At the same time, PCs have made some progress addressing tablet competition with more slim, touch, and low-cost models available. Growth of Chromebooks, particularly in the education segment in mature markets, is also contributing to the PC outlook. In emerging regions, the competition from other devices remains a larger factor, and the boost from mature market drivers less pronounced. Replacement of Windows XP-based systems should also decline over time as the installed base of XP systems shrinks.

"Programs to reduce PC prices, such as Windows 8.1 with Bing, have helped to improve PC shipments in some segments," said Jay Chou, Senior Research Analyst, Worldwide PC Trackers. "Coupled with a shift toward more mobile PCs, the market has seen a quickened pace of innovation and a focus on price points. Nevertheless, the prospects for significant PC growth in the long term remain tenuous, as users increasingly see PCs as only one of several computing devices."

"Direct competition from tablets seems to be waning," said Loren Loverde, Vice President, Worldwide PC Trackers. "However, PC replacement cycles have expanded as users have alternative computing platforms and places to spend money. The launch of Windows 9 Threshold in 2015 could potentially boost demand, although it will be hard to gauge the actual impact until the advantages to consumers and commercial users in functionality and integration with specific devices is more apparent. For the moment, we continue to see PC demand coming primarily from replacements with overall shipments declining slightly through the end of the forecast."


PC Shipments by Region and Product Category, 2013-2018 (Shipments in millions)

Region     Product Category     2013     2014*     2018*
Emerging Markets Desktop PC 85.6 79.5 76.1
Emerging Markets Portable PC 96.2 83.2 85.7
Emerging Markets Total PC 181.9 162.7 161.8
Mature Markets Desktop PC 51.1 54.0 45.0
Mature Markets Portable PC 82.2 86.7 84.2
Mature Markets Total PC 133.3 140.7 129.2
Worldwide Desktop PC 136.7 133.5 121.1
Worldwide Portable PC 178.4 170.0 170.0
Worldwide     Total PC     315.1     303.5     291.1

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarter PC Tracker, August, 2014.

* Forecast data

See Table and Taxonomy Notes below


In addition to the table above, an interactive graphic illustrating worldwide Desktop and Portable PC shipments and Total PC market growth for 2012-2015 is available here. Instructions on how to embed this graphic into online news articles and social media can be found by viewing this press release on IDC.com.


PC Shipment Growth by Region and Product Category, 2013-2018

Region     Product Category     2013     2014*     2018*
Emerging Markets Desktop PC -9.6% -7.1% -1.0%
Emerging Markets Portable PC -12.9% -13.4% 2.1%
Emerging Markets Total PC -11.3% -10.4% 0.6%
Mature Markets Desktop PC -4.8% 5,7% -2.5%
Mature Markets Portable PC -9.3% 5.6% -0.4%
Mature Markets Total PC -7.6% 5.6% -1.1%
Worldwide Desktop PC -7.8% -2.3% -1.5%
Worldwide Portable PC -11.3% -4.7% 0.8%
Worldwide     Total PC     -9.8%     -3.7%     -0.2%

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarter PC Tracker, August, 2014

* Forecast data


Table Note: Mature Markets include U.S., Western Europe, Japan, and Canada. Emerging Markets includes Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan), Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa.

Taxonomy Note: PCs include Desktop, Mini Notebook and other Portable PCs which possess non-detachable keyboards, and do not include handhelds or Tablets such as the Apple iPad, Microsoft Surface Pro or Android Tablets

IDC's Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker gathers PC market data in more than 80 countries by vendor, form factor, brand, processor brand and speed, sales channel and user segment. The research includes historical and forecast trend analysis as well as price band and installed base data. For more information, or to subscribe to the research, please contact Kathy Nagamine at 650-350-6423 or [email protected].

About IDC Trackers

IDC Tracker products provide accurate and timely market size, vendor share, and forecasts for hundreds of technology markets from more than 100 countries around the globe. Using proprietary tools and research processes, IDC's Trackers are updated on a semiannual, quarterly, and monthly basis. Tracker results are delivered to clients in user-friendly excel deliverables and on-line query tools. The IDC Tracker Charts app allows users to view data charts from the most recent IDC Tracker products on their iPhone and iPad.

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. In 2014, IDC celebrates its 50th anniversary of providing strategic insights to help clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading Technology media, Research, and Events Company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com.

All product and company names may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.

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