PC Market in Recovery Mode as Shipments Rise

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By Kalyan Kumar | July 11, 2014 3:18 PM EST

The prolonged slump in personal computer sales is bottoming out. According to an Associated Press report by Mae Anderson, the demand in the second quarter is bright in all developed markets including North America and Europe. The PC sales had crashed in recent years after a surge in tablets and mobile devices. The economic slowdown around the world also led to disrupted sales.

Strong Sales in US and EU

The PC sales were the strongest in Europe, U.S. and Canada. But emerging markets saw sales hampered by weak economies and competition from low-cost tablets. In the U.S., shipments went up by 6.9 percent spurred by businesses replacing office PCs and consumers updating the Windows XP systems.

Reports from Gartner and IDC 

There is much to cheer from the quarterly figures released by research firms Gartner Inc. and International Data Corp (IDC) showing an uptick in the market as the global slump in PC sale is receding. In the April to June quarter, Gartner notes that PC shipments went up by 0.1 percent and that translates to 75.8 million units.

IDC, with a slightly different figure also says quarterly results are positive ever after the second quarter of 2012 when tablets and mobile devices started overshadowing PC sales..

Sales Drivers

The USA today also reports the same. Adam Ganuch, its writer concurs that Worldwide PC shipments have totaled 74.4 million for the quarter.

Chrome Books

The improved PC sales conditions in developed markets are also attributed to the rising interest in low-priced PC models like Chromebook, which is using Google's operating system. It has been priced at $199.

Loren Loverde, VP of IDC reasons that the better than expected results shows a rebound from weaker demand and the short-term replacement activities.

There is visible recovery in all emerging markets. That also coincides with slower growth in mature regions. But it may take a bit more time to show that the recent gains are concrete and to project the motives for a long-term outlook.

According to IDC Research Analyst Jay Chou an encouraging factor in the new development is the intake of lower-end systems including Chromebooks and slowing of tablet growth and stabilisation at the consumer side.

There is optimism that the growth in U.S. PC market will stay positive for the rest of the year. IDC analyst Rajani Singh says the strong back-to-school and holiday seasons are to help in that.

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