PC shipments grew in second quarter 2018, the first growth since first quarter 2012, according to Gartner and IDC.
Both market research firms agree that PC shipments grew. However, IDC says the market grew 2.7 percent year-over-year while Gartner claims only a 1.4 percent increase since second quarter 2017.
It’s important to note that the research firms include different data in the findings. IDC includes Chromebooks but excludes Windows tablets. IDC also doesn’t count Windows devices with detachable keyboards like the Surface Pro.
Gartner however counts tablets based on Windows as PCs, but not Chromebooks. Additionally, Gartner doesn’t count any tablets not based on Windows.
Last year it appeared Chromebooks were powering some growth in the PC market. However, it’s clear now that regular PCs or Macs are powering some growth as well.
Business refresh cycle powering PC growth
Businesses seem to be the main factor behind the growth in the second quarter.
“PC shipment growth in the second quarter of 2018 was driven by demand in the business market, which was offset by declining shipments in the consumer segment,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner.
On this, IDC agrees with Gartner.
“Although traditional PCs may not be the default device for many usage scenarios, the market continues to show pockets of resiliency as PC usage experience evolves and improves,” said Jay Chou, research manager with IDC’s Personal Computing Device Tracker.
“Even certain types of desktops are seeing growth amid this business-driven refresh cycle.”
Kitagawa says that PC momentum will likely weaken in two years when this business driven refresh cycle ends.
Lenovo, HP, Dell, Apple and Acer all showed growth while competitors continued to weaken. Likely the top five will sustain their dominance going forward.
It’s also important to note that Lenovo’s numbers include its partnership with Fujitsu. Fujitsu’s PC shipments are included with Lenovo’s numbers, giving the company a virtual tie for top spot with HP.