Eight of the nine leading PC brands reduced their purchases of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels in July, resulting in a decline of 23 percent compared with July 2012, according to market research firm IHS.
Some 14.9 million units shipped in July 2013, down from 19.3 million units in July 2012, and down 18 percent from 18.1 million units in June 2013.
The eight leading PC brands -- Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, Sony, and Toshiba -- all cut their orders. In contrast, Apple raised its order on an annual basis to meet demand for the MacBook Air notebook computer.
The order declines came after a near-disastrous second quarter for mobile PC sales, with a sequential drop in shipments of 5.1 percent, the first such drop since the second quarter of 2002, said IHS.
Acer posted the biggest decline, dropping its order by 53 percent compared with June. Toshiba ordered 43 percent fewer LCDs and Lenovo 35 percent. Dell's procurement declined 36 percent, while Hewlett Packard's decreased by 20 percent. Apple, Asus, Samsung, and Sony all increased their LCD purchases sequentially, but only Apple did on an annual basis, IHS said.
Apple generated the largest increase, up 76 percent, with 1.8 million units ordered.
"Notebook brands during the third quarter typically increase their purchases of LCD panels as they prepare to launch new mobile PC models for the second half of the year," said Ricky Park, senior manager for large-area displays at IHS, in a press release. He went on to say:
However, many key brands this year have accumulated large panel inventory surpluses because of weak sales in the first half. This has caused them to reduce purchases in July, leading to major declines in notebook PC panel market shipments both on a sequential and an annual basis.
IHS estimates that after the heavy reduction in July orders, the market will have returned to sequential growth in August with a 10 percent increase. However, this will still leave August shipments of LCD panels for notebook computers down 23 percent compared to August 2012, the company said.