Australia continues to buck global PC trend

Australia continues to buck global PC trend

Comes after six consecutive years of decline in the global PC market, according to Gartner figures

Traditional PC shipments in Australia grew by 2.2 per cent year-on-year during the fourth quarter of 2017, to 1.16 million units, according to the latest figures by industry analyst firm, IDC.

The local rise in PC shipments, including desktops, notebooks, and workstations, continues a trend in the local Asia Pacific region of outperforming the global market in terms of PC shipment growth.

In January industry analyst, Gartner, revealed figures suggesting that worldwide PC and notebook shipments had experienced six consecutive years of decline after closing 2017 with a 2.8 per cent fall.

The fourth quarter of 2017 alone recorded a two per cent decline due to weak demand from the United States (US) and in the consumer sector, according to research firm, Gartner.

Asia Pacific, however, recorded a 0.6 per cent increase in the fourth quarter of 2017, selling 25 million units, compared to the same period in 2016.

Now, according to IDC’s Quarterly Personal Computing Devices Tracker, the latest local figures show that the Australian market was somewhat higher than the worldwide traditional PC market's growth of 0.5 per cent, year-on-year.

According to IDC, the overall market in Australia was driven by major education deployments, including public and private schools, resulting in growth of the education segment by 56.6 per cent compared to the same period the year prior.

The education segment saw HP and Acer, which had dominated the education segment until recently, face fresh competition from Lenovo this year, according to IDC.

Lenovo grabbed 22.7 per cent share in the education segment, compared to 11.5 per cent in the corresponding period last year, the analyst firm said.

It should be noted, however, that HP continued to retain the greatest overall market share of any single PC vendor in the local market, claiming around 28.4 per cent of total shipments during the period.

HP’s hold was followed by Lenovo, with 16.6 per cent of the overall local market share, Apple, with 16.3 per cent, Dell, with 15.2 per cent, followed by Acer, with 11.5 per cent, and others.

(Source: IDC)
(Source: IDC)

Notebooks continued to represent the greatest single share of shipments, with the category growing slightly to more than 800,000 units during the period, followed by desktop PCs, of which just over 300,000 were shipped during quarter, with workstations making up just a fraction of that figure.

The government and enterprise sectors, meanwhile, claimed PC shipment growth rates of 11.5 per cent and 2.3 per cent year-on-year, respectively, while small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) declined by 23.7 per cent year-on-year, despite the federal government tax benefits.

“The small and medium business segment continues to sweat assets after the Windows 10 free OS update; the option of having a flexible device refresh rate, unlike global enterprise accounts that mostly have a fixed refresh rate, is impacting the SMB segment”, IDC Australia client devices analyst, Sagar Raghavendra, said.

At the same time, the consumer segment was relatively flat year on year, although it still represented the greatest single market into which PCs were shipped during the period, claiming over half-a-million units.

“Hype around Amazon Australia, which launched in December, did little to improve consumer spending; the market, however, did well in the gaming segment, with AMD’s Ryzen continuing to do well in the white-box category,” Raghavendra said.

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