SAN FRANCISCO—Global PC shipments declined again in 2015, the fourth consecutive year of contraction in what has traditionally been the most important market for the semiconductor industry, according to market research firms.
Just 276.2 million PC units shipped in 2015, the first time since 2008 that the PC market did not break the 300 million unit mark, according to International Data Corp. (IDC). It was the fourth consecutive year of declining shipments for PCs.
Fourth quarter PC shipments totaled just 71.9 million units, a decline of 10.6% compared with the fourth quarter of 2014, IDC said. The year-over-year decline was the largest in history, breaking the old mark of 9.8% set in 2013, IDC said.
"The PC market remains competitive and the economic environment weakened further with the recent drop in the Chinese stock market," said Loren Loverde, vice president of IDC’s Worldwide PC Tracker service, in a statement.
Loverde expects PC replacements to pick up in 2016, especially later in the year. Loverde said commercial adoption of Windows 10 is expected to accelerate and consumer buying should also stabilize by the second half of the year.
”Most PC users have delayed an upgrade, but can only maintain this for so long before facing security and performance issues,” Loverde said. “We continue to believe that a majority of these users will purchase another PC, motivated by new products and attractive pricing."
Gartner Inc., a market research firm and competitor to IDC, said fourth quarter PC shipments totaled 75.7 million units in the fourth quarter, an 8.3% decline from the fourth quarter of 2014. Gartner, which counts PC shipments slightly differently from IDC, estimates that 288.7 million PCs shipped in 2015, down 8 percent from 2014.
—Dylan McGrath covers the semiconductor industry for EE Times.