iPad Cuts PC Growth

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The iPad continues to cut into PC sales, with IDC claiming it helped slice growth for PCs, from an expected 5.5 percent to 2.7 percent in fourth quarter worldwide shipments.

Ipad cuts into PC salesIDC’s research director David Daoud said, “Growth steadily slowed throughout 2010 as weakening demand and competition from the Apple iPad constrained PC shipments.”

The blow to the PC market may worsen in 2011 as more media tablet hit the market, said Daoud.

Gartner, which also released PC results Wednesday, agreed. “Overall, holiday PC sales were weak in many key regions due to the intensifying competition in consumer spending. Media tablets, such as the iPad, as well as other consumer electronic (CE) devices, such as game consoles, all competed against PCs,” said principal analyst Mikako Kitagawa.

In the U.S., PC shipments in Q4 declined by 6.6 to 19.1 million units, said Gartner, but that actually beat the company’s forecast of a 10 percent decline.

“U.S. holiday sales were not fantastic for most PC vendors, but the professional market did show healthy growth during the quarter,” Kitagawa said. “Media tablets undoubtedly intensified the competition in the consumer market. These devices do not replace primary PCs, but they are viewed as good enough devices for these who want to have a second and third connected device for content consumption usage. Mini-notebook shipments were hit the most by the success of media tablets.”

U.S. PC sales should improve in 2011, forecasts IDC. “We continue to expect roughly flat growth in the first half of 2011 before the market picks up speed again,” it said in a statement.

Overall, for the full year 2010, global PC shipments were up by more than 13 percent. IDC said shipments surged 13.6 percent to 346.2 million and Gartner said shipments rose 13.8 percent to 350.9 million units.

Lenovo showed the strongest global growth for 2010 driven by sales of enterprise PCs as corporations upgraded during Q4, and sales in China, said Gartner.

Gartner: PC market share 2010

Source: IDC, Gartner

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