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Worldwide PC shipments declined 28.5% in Q4 of 2022, 16.2% for year

Christian Fernsby |
Worldwide PC shipments totaled 65.3 million units in the fourth quarter of 2022, a 28.5% decrease from the fourth quarter of 2021, according to preliminary results by Gartner.

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This marks the largest quarterly shipment decline since Gartner began tracking the PC market in the mid-1990s. For the year, PC shipments reached 286.2 million units in 2022, a 16.2% decrease from 2021.

“The anticipation of a global recession, increased inflation and higher interest rates have had a major impact on PC demand,” said Mikako Kitagawa, Director Analyst at Gartner. “Since many consumers already have relatively new PCs that were purchased during the pandemic, a lack of affordability is superseding any motivation to buy, causing consumer PC demand to drop to its lowest level in years.”

“The enterprise PC market is also being impacted by a slowing economy,” added Kitagawa.

“PC demand among enterprises began declining in the third quarter of 2022, but the market has now shifted from softness to deterioration. Enterprise buyers are extending PC lifecycles and delaying purchases, meaning the business market will likely not return to growth until 2024.”

Simultaneously, higher PC inventory levels started building in the first half of 2022 and have become a bottleneck for the PC market. Low PC supply caused by high demand and supply chain disruptions through 2021 quickly turned into an excess of supply once demand quickly and significantly slowed.

The top three vendors in the worldwide PC market remained unchanged in the fourth quarter of 2022, with Lenovo maintaining the No. 1 spot in shipments.

While Lenovo maintained 24% market share, the company experienced its steepest decline since Gartner started tracking the PC market. Lenovo’s shipments fell in all regions except in Japan, declining over 30% in EMEA and Latin America.

HP and Dell also experienced historically steep declines. HP was hit hardest in the EMEA market, where shipments decreased 44% year-over-year. For Dell, weak demand in the large business market impacted shipments in the second half of 2022.

The U.S. PC market declined 20.5% in the fourth quarter of 2022, registering its sixth straight quarter of shipment decline. Echoing the trend of the global PC market, both consumer and business PC spending slowed due to economic conditions.

“Even as vendors offered deep PC discounts during the holiday season in an attempt to lower inventory, consumers were not swayed to spare their money,” said Kitagawa.

HP took over the top spot in the U.S. PC market based on shipments with 26.8% market share. Dell followed with 23.4% of the U.S. PC market share.

The EMEA PC market had a historical decline of 37.2% year over year, due to the intersection of political unrest, inflationary pressures, interest rate increases and a pending recession.

“A decline of this magnitude only happens when market demand effectively comes to a halt,” said Kitagawa. “Business and consumer confidence across EMEA has collapsed, leading to a huge drop in PC demand. A massive increase in inventory has also severely limited sell-in opportunities as sellers focus on moving old stock.”

The Asia Pacific market excluding Japan declined 29.4% year-over-year, mainly due to the market in China. While the fourth quarter has traditionally been peak season for China’s business PC market, budget cuts by the Chinese government and uncertainty around changing COVID policies led to a significant drop in overall PC demand.

computerWorldwide PC shipments totaled 286.2 million units in 2022, a 16.2% decrease from 2021 and the worst annual shipment decline in Gartner’s PC tracking history,

“Total PC shipments in 2022 were close to pre-COVID levels, with 2019 shipments well below 300 million units,” said Kitagawa.

“The PC industry experienced very unusual ups and downs over the past 11 years. After the extraordinary growth period between 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic, the market has clearly begun a downward trend which will continue until the beginning of 2024.


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