Posted on

PC shipments rebound slightly following COVID-19-fueled decline

PC shipments had a rough first quarter for all of the same reasons as everything that isn’t a Clorox wipe or N95 mask. People just weren’t ready to drop a ton of money on a new device. The impact of COVID-19 was lessened slightly by IT departments and individuals adapting to the new remote working realty, but the numbers were far from ideal overall, due in no small part to issues with the supply, as the virus hit China and other parts of Asia.

According to numbers from Gartner, Q2 has seen the beginning of a rebound. It’s not a huge bump, mind, but at 2.8% year-over-year, it’s a notable increase after a rough first quarter. There are a couple of reasons for the growth here. First is the aforementioned interest in upgrading home setups for work and school. Second is from retailers, which have reopened in a number of locations and have begun to refill shelves after being cut off via the supply chain.

Source: Gartner

Lenovo stayed at the number one spot, with HP following close behind. The companies saw 4.2% and 17.1% increase in shipments, respectively. Dell, Apple and Acer rounded out the top five. All told, the U.S. market is up 3.5% for the quarter, as well. Mobile computers in particular saw the biggest growth, helping to curb some of the attrition among desktops.

Notably, Gartner believes the growth will only be temporary, so take the good news where you can get it, PC makers. “[T]his uptick in mobile PC demand will not continue beyond 2020, as shipments were mainly boosted by short-term business needs due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Gartner analyst Mikako Kitagawa says in the release.

Read More

Posted on

Smartphone sales expected to get a slight bump in 2020

Last year saw global smartphone sales decline for the first time since analysts started tracking such things. In Gartner’s case, that comprises a full 11 years, as figures dropped 2% for 2019. Following on last week’s global device forecast, the firm is drilling down on smartphone figures with some slightly rosier results.

According to the new numbers from the firm, global smartphone rates are expected to reverse course slightly for 2020, with a predicted 3% bump in worldwide sales. It’s a minor success, but after a few years of stagnation and then decline, a small victory is a victory no less.

I won’t dig too far into why numbers have been falling lately (I’d direct you here instead), but 2020 is expected to be the first year the move to 5G will finally see some real, tangible payoff for manufacturers. Apple, of course, is expected to get into the game at the end of the year, with the next iPhone, while a new batch of Qualcomm chips are helping to make cheaper 5G devices a reality.

5G phone sales are expected to have their largest impact in China and the broader Asia/Pacific regions. Those areas are expected to increase at 5.1% and 5.7% in overall sales, year over year, respectively. The Middle East and North Africa region, meanwhile, should get the biggest bump, at 5.9% for the year.

Ultimately, 5G may only be a temporary solution to declining smartphone sales. Without a radical shift in form factor or functionality, it’s hard to imagine smartphone sales seeing a substantial course correction in the coming years.

Source: TechCrunch