LONDON – The unit volume of personal computer shipments will decline by 1.3 percent in 2013 to 345.8 million, following on from a fall of 3.7 percent in 2012, according to market research firm International Data Corp.
IDC (Framingham, Mass.) puts the shrink down to an underwhelming reception for Microsoft's Windows 8 operating systems and consumers' continuing love affair with tablet computers.
The expectation that Windows 8 would promote a varied range of less expensive ultrathin computer offerings has not been fulfilled, IDC said. Instead a lack of touchscreen components has contributed to a limited supply of touch-enabled Windows 8 models. This has put the Windows 8 PCs on offer out of step with the touch focus of Windows 8. In addition the PCs have been priced expensively, IDC said.
"Growth in emerging regions has slowed considerably, and we continue to see constrained PC demand as buyers favor other devices for their mobility and convenience features. We still don't see tablets – with limited local storage, file system, lesser focus on traditional productivity, etc. – as functional competitors to PCs. But they are winning consumer dollars with mobility and consumer appeal nevertheless," said Loren Loverde, vice president at IDC.
The first half of 2013 will continue to be tough with the market improving in the second half of 2013. One factor could be an increased acceptance of Windows 8 when support for the Windows XP operating system is stopped.
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Personal computer shipments by region and form factor, 2012-2017 (Shipments in millions) excluding tablet computers. Source: International Data Corp. (* denotes forecast data)
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