Worldwide PC shipments experienced double-digit growth in the second quarter, the first time since the third quarter of 2000, according to preliminary market research published by Gartner.
Second-quarter shipments increased 10 per cent from the same period last year to 32.8 million, the market research group said.
Vice-president of Gartner's worldwide computing platforms group, Charles Smulders, said the PC industry performed better than expected, suggesting that market conditions were improving.
He warned, however, that sustained improvement would depend on economic conditions and their effect on the business upgrade cycle.
Four of the five top-tier vendors worldwide achieved double-digit growth rates in the second quarter. Dell Computer was the number one vendor with a 17.6 per cent market share, shipping 5.8 million PCs in the second quarter compared to 4.6 million the year before. That represented a growth rate of 29.5 per cent.
On the heels of Dell was Hewlett-Packard (HP) with a 16.1 per cent market share. In the second quarter, HP shipped 5.3 million PCs compared to 4.7 million the year before, a growth rate of 12.1 per cent.
Even though IBM was able to increase its growth by 13.4 per cent, shipping 2.2 million PCs, the company remained a distant third with a 6.7 per cent market share.
Fujitsu, in fourth place, shipped 1.3 million units in the second quarter, or 10.8 per cent more than the year before, accounting for a 4 per cent market share.
NEC was the only top-five vendor to experience a second-quarter dip in shipments, down 2.7 per cent. The vendor has a market share of 3.1 per cent.
Second-quarter PC shipments in the U.S. rose 11.1 per cent due in part to strong demand from the consumer and education segments, according to Gartner, Smulders said. Competitive pricing and mobile PCs were important drivers in the home market.
PC shipments in the Asia-Pacific region fell below expectations, largely because of the effects of the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) on business activity in China, Gartner said.
Data on unit shipments in the region were not immediately available.