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Gartner Says PC Market in Western Europe Declined 12.8 Percent in Third Quarter of 2013

U.K. Recorded Worst Decline of the Region's Three Biggest Country Markets

In France, Lenovo and HP Exhibited Best Performances in a Declining PC Market

PC shipments in Western Europe totaled 11.9 million units in the third quarter of 2013, a decline of 12.8 percent from the same period in 2012, according to Gartner, Inc. (see Table 1). 

"The PC market in Western Europe continued to shrink, declining faster than expected," said Meike Escherich, principal research analyst at Gartner. "The transition from PCs to tablets continued to reduce PC sales. In addition, product transitions to 'Haswell' and 'Bay Trail' processors, and preparations for the launch of Windows 8.1 and associated new products, meant that vendors were careful about managing inventory and focused on clearing out stock in the distribution channel." 

All PC segments in Western Europe declined in the third quarter of 2013. Mobile and desktop PC shipments declined by 14.5 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively. PC shipments in the professional PC market declined by 8.3 percent, while the consumer PC market decreased by 17.1 percent. 

HP remained the No. 1 vendor, with flat year-over-year results. Lenovo moved up to No. 2 position from the third quarter of 2012. Lenovo's double-digit growth in the third quarter of 2013 was driven by strong sales of mobile PCs in the consumer and small and midsize business segments, at the expense of Acer and Samsung. Lenovo and Dell were the only top-five vendors to grow in the third quarter of 2013. Dell continued to expand its footprint in the business PC segment with aggressive pricing. Acer suffered a double-digit shipment decline as a result of the continued shift from consumer PCs to tablets and hybrid form factors. Apple made its debut among the top-five vendors, replacing Asus, which suffered a 35 percent decline in shipments and a two percentage point loss of market share. 

"Most PC vendors have shifted their investment from consumer PCs to tablets and hybrid form factors," said Ms. Escherich. "The challenge they face is to protect their current PC market positions while competing in an aggressive and fast-moving alternative mobile device market. Without a solid position in the professional PC market, they will find it challenging to defend their positions and invest in non-PC devices." 

Table 1

Western Europe: PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 3Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Vendor

3Q13

Shipments

3Q13 Market Share (%)

3Q12 Shipments

3Q12 Market Share (%)

3Q12-3Q13 Growth (%)

 HP

 2,618

22.1

 2,622

19.3

-0.2

 Lenovo

 1,471

12.4

 1,265

9.3

16.3

 Acer Group

 1,382

11.7

 1,920

14.1

-28.0

 Dell

 1,218

10.3

 1,204

8.9

1.1

 Apple

 996

8.4

 1,028

7.6

-3.1

 Others

 4,174

35.1

5,556

40.8

-24.8

 Total

 11,859

 100.0

 13,595

 100.0

-12.8

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs, mobile PCs and x86 tablets equipped with Windows 8; it excludes Chromebooks and other tablets.

Source: Gartner (November 2013) 

United Kingdom: PC Shipment Decline Was Greater Than in France and Germany 

PC shipments in the U.K. totaled 2.3 million units in the third quarter of 2013, a decrease of 21.2 percent from the same period in 2012 (see Table 2). 

"Eleven of the previous 12 quarters also showed decline in the UK PC market," said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner. In the third quarter of 2013, we saw that the weakness of the PC market in the U.K. was greater than in France and Germany. In addition, while the top five vendors' shipments in the U.K. declined by 3.5 percent, the other PC vendors' shipments declined by more than 40 percent. “Overall, we expect the PC market in the U.K. to remain weak in the fourth quarter of 2013,” added Mr. Atwal. 

The consumer PC market fell by 13.6 percent, while the professional PC market declined by 28.1 percent. The mobile PC market accounted for 62 percent of total PC shipments in the U.K., with volumes decreasing by 23.7 percent year-on-year. Desktop PC shipments declined by 16.9 percent. 

HP remained the No. 1 vendor, though it suffered a year-over-year shipment decline of 9 percent, which was minimized by better professional desk-based PC growth. Dell maintained the No. 2 spot and performed well in the professional PC market. With strong growth in both the professional and consumer PC markets, Lenovo was the only vendor among the top five to register shipment growth, with a 26.4 percent rise. Acer had a poor quarter, exhibiting the worst decline (17.9 percent) of the top five vendors, with consumer PC growth declining 20 percent in the third quarter of 2013. 

"New Ultramobile devices and tablets are expected to raise the interest of consumers, but spending on these products will remain limited in the near future," said Mr. Atwal.

Table 2

United Kingdom: PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 3Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Vendor

3Q13

Shipments

3Q13 Market Share (%)

3Q12 Shipments

3Q12 Market Share (%)

3Q12-3Q13 Growth (%)

HP

 501

21.3

 551

18.5

-9.1

Dell

 334

14.2

 352

11.8

-4.9

Lenovo

 291

12.4

 230

7.7

26.4

Apple

 234

9.9

 235

7.9

-0.5

Acer Group

 228

9.7

 277

9.3

-17.7

Others

 767

32.6

 1,341

44.9

-42.8

Total

 2,355

 100.0

 2,987

 100.0

-21.2

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs, mobile PCs and x86 tablets equipped with Windows 8; it excludes Chromebooks and other tablets.

Source: Gartner (November 2013) 

France: Lenovo and HP Exhibited Best Performances in a Declining PC Market 

PC shipments in France totaled 2.3 million units in the third quarter of 2013, a decrease of 10.4 percent from the same period in 2012 (see Table 3). 

"For the fifth consecutive quarter, the PC market in France declined, but the decline was less steep than in the U.K. and Germany," said Isabelle Durand, principal research analyst at Gartner. "As in other parts of Western Europe, many vendors went through product transitions and inventory clean-ups, which both played a part in the slowdown." 

The mobile PC market accounted for 66 percent of PC shipments in France, with volumes decreasing by 8.9 percent. Desktop PC shipments declined by 13.1 percent. Ultraportables were the only form factor to grow; they represented 17.6 percent of mobile PCs shipped. 

The consumer and professional PC markets decreased 9.7 percent and 11.4 percent, respectively. 

HP remained in the No. 1 position and returned to year-over-year growth for the first time since the second quarter of 2010. HP achieved strong sales of mobile PCs in the consumer market. Lenovo was the fastest growing of the top five PC vendors, with a 17 percent rise in shipments. Lenovo's strong performance was mainly thanks to sales of mobile PCs in the business and consumer segments, in which the company introduced several new products at attractive prices.

Acer and Asus suffered double-digit shipment declines, as both vendors continued to shift their investments from consumer PCs to tablet and hybrid form factors. 

"The growing number of Haswell-based convertibles, detachable devices and Atom-based tablets, as well as the deployment of Windows 8.1, will not be enough to deliver growth next quarter,” said Ms. Durand. 

Table 3

France: PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 3Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Vendor

3Q13

Shipments

3Q13 Market Share (%)

3Q12 Shipments

3Q12 Market Share (%)

3Q12-3Q13 Growth (%)

HP

643

27.5

585

22.4

10.0

Acer Group

337

14.4

527

20.2

-36.0

Asus

284

12.2

389

14.9

-27.1

Dell

227

9.7

242

9.3

-6.3

Lenovo

213

9.1

182

7.0

17.1

Others

632

27.1

682

26.2

-7.3

Total

2,336

100.0

2,607

100.0

-10.4

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs, mobile PCs and x86 tablets equipped with Windows 8; it excludes Chromebooks and other tablets.

Source: Gartner (November 2013) 

Germany: Fujitsu Made Its Debut Among the Top Five 

PC shipments in Germany totaled 2.3 million units in the third quarter of 2013, a decrease of 14.4 percent from the same period in 2012 (see Table 4). 

Mobile PC shipments declined by 18 percent, while desktop PC volumes decreased by 10 percent. Demand for consumer and professional PCs declined by 21 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

"While vendors were careful to manage PC inventory and focused on clearing out stock in the distribution channel, many reported better sales in the second half of the quarter," said Ms. Escherich. 

Despite a year-on-year decline in shipments, Lenovo remained in the No. 1 position. It increased its lead with a 17.3 percent market share, four percentage points ahead of HP. Lenovo was one of only two vendors to achieve a shipment increase in the professional PC segment, with a 17 percent rise. HP maintained its lead in the professional and desktop PC segments, despite declining volumes. Acer lost the No. 2 spot to HP. Acer recorded a 30.1 percent decline in shipments due to its portfolio shifting toward more expensive, hybrid models. Asus disappeared from the top five vendors and was replaced by Fujitsu, which was the only top 10 vendor to exhibit both year-on-year growth and a market share increase across all PC segments. Dell's shipments held fairly steady, thanks to strong sales in the consumer segment.

"We expect to see some attractive new PCs in the stores in the fourth quarter of 2013, running Windows 8.1, with thinner form factors and longer battery life enabled by Intel's Haswell processors," said Ms. Escherich. "These PCs will compete with high-end tablets and be complemented by a new generation of Atom-based devices that will compete with low-end tablets." Although this will not fully compensate for the PC's overall decline, it represents an opportunity for profit in the midrange and higher-end PC segments."

Table 4

Germany: PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 3Q13 (Thousands of Units)

Vendor

3Q13

Shipments

3Q13 Market Share (%)

3Q12 Shipments

3Q12 Market Share (%)

3Q12-3Q13 Growth (%)

Lenovo

 396

17.3

 422

15.8

-6.1

HP

 304

13.3

 336

12.6

-9.6

Acer Group

 274

12.0

 392

14.7

-30.1

Fujitsu

 214

9.4

 195

7.3

9.7

Dell

 205

8.9

 207

7.7

-1.0

Others

 896

39.1

 1,123

41.9

-20.2

Total

 2,289

   100.0 

 2,675

 100.0

-14.4

Note: Data includes desk-based PCs, mobile PCs and x86 tablets equipped with Windows 8; it excludes Chromebooks and other tablets.

Source: Gartner (November 2013)

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