Global PC shipments down 6.5% in Q1 2009; HP is

Published by rudy Date posted on April 16, 2009

Global PC shipments totaled 67.2 million units in the first quarter of 2009, a 6.5 percent decline versus first quarter 2008, according to preliminary data from Gartner.

“We are seeing some evidence of channel inventory restocking, particularly in the U.S.,” said George Shiffler, research director at Gartner. “This restocking should not be interpreted as a recovery in PC end-user demand; it’s still unclear if the global PC market has hit the bottom.”

Hewlett-Packard extended its lead as king of the worldwide PC market, accounting for 19.8 percent of global shipments in first quarter 2009. HP’s strength derived from its solid consumer PC portfolio, Gartner says.

Dell and Acer finished the quarter in a virtual tie for the No. 2 position worldwide, separated by just a tenth of a percentage point. Why the tie? Dell is bogged down by its heavy reliance on the professional market and Acer has an advantageous position in the growing netbook market, Gartner says.

Netbooks continue to be the growth driver for the PC industry, but a sharp decline in industry revenues is expected due to the lower average selling prices of the devices, Gartner says.

In the U.S. market alone, PC shipments totaled 15.3 million units in the first quarter of 2009, a three-tenths of one percent decline versus first quarter 2008. Shipments were stronger than expected thanks to strong growth in low-priced mobile PCs, Gartner says.

HP was the No. 1 vendor in the U.S. for the first time since 2001, accounting for 21 percent of PC shipments in first quarter 2009.

“HP’s strong portfolio of low priced consumer mobile PCs helped drive HP’s growth in the U.S. home market while its improved channel programs helped it to increase share in the professional market,” according to Gartner.

Dell, on the other hand, was hit hard by tough competition and a weak professional market in the U.S.

Interestingly, analysts say that Apple’s relatively higher average selling price created challenges for it in the tough economy, but that “its deft control of inventories limited its shipment decline.”

Quick hits about the rest of the world:

– The Middle East & Africa PC market was down 10.2 percent from the same period last year.
– PC shipments in Asia/Pacific were down 5.5 percent from Q1 2008.
– In Latin America, PC shipments were down 12.4 percent from Q1 2008.
– PC shipments in Japan were down 3.8 percent from Q1 2008.

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