Another example of why China's PC market differs from trends in the rest of the world is the proportion of consumer versus consumer PCs, IHS said. In China, the ratio of consumer to commercial PCs in 2012 was roughly 50-50, compared with the 65-35 percent ratio in the rest of the world, IHS said.
Another unique characteristic of China's PC market is that the preferred notebook display size in China is 14 inches. Such notebooks account for 70 percent of notebook PC shipments in China, IHS said. For the rest of the world, the 14-inch makes up less than 30 percent, IHS said.
PCs with pre-installed operating systems make up less than 50 percent of China's PC shipments, IHS said. IN the rest of the world, such systems make up more than 90 percent of systems shipped, the firm said.
China's PC market does shares one common trait with the worldwide PC market, IHS said. Like the rest of the world, demand in China remains weak as consumers migrate to using mobile devices like cellphones. China’s PC market is projected to grow only by 3 to 4 percent this year, IHS said.
But IHS said a vast market opportunity continues to exist for PCs in China in the form of potential first-time buyers, most of whom live in the countryside. China's central government plans this year to invest some 40 trillion yuan—equivalent to some $6.4 trillion—to build rural infrastructure in the next 10 years, IHS said. PC OEMS can take advantage of the initiative to build out and expand from the cities, the firm said.
China is on track to retain its position as the largest PC market in the world for the foreseeable future unchallenged and alone, according to IHS.