HP Leads Lenovo as PC Market Sees Some Resurgence

An HP laptop.

HP is looking at moving some production out of China. (Image: Monoar_CGI_Artist via Pixabay)

As per the latest PC sales estimates by the International Data Corporation (IDC), HP continued to keep its lead as the top-selling PC brand in the world in the second quarter of 2018, leaving Lenovo in the second position.

The HP vs Lenovo sales battle

As per IDC, HP shipped around 14.9 million units in the second quarter of 2018, capturing 23.9 percent of the global PC sales for the period. In contrast, Lenovo only shipped 13.8 million units, garnering just a 22.1 percent share of the total market. Dell computers came in third.

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But despite Lenovo only securing the second position, the IDC report states that the company’s performance actually showed strong growth in Q2. This is largely attributed to the organization’s deal with Fujitsu, which allowed joint manufacturing and operation between the two companies.

However, rival research firm Gartner had a different story to tell in regard to which company sold the most unit in the second quarter. According to Gartner, both companies had the exact same market share at 21.9 percent for Q2 in 2018. But when seen from the perspective of units sold, Lenovo tops the list. The company apparently sold 13,601,000 units, while HP came very close with 13,589,000 units. Lenovo also saw a 10.5 percent YoY growth in Q2 compared to HP’s 6.1 percent.

So, why do two research firms show two different numbers when it comes to PC sales? This has to do with their categorization of what is considered a “PC.”

IDC includes Chromebooks in its definition of PC and excludes all Windows-based tablets. In contrast, Gartner excludes Chromebooks from its calculation and includes Windows-based tablets. And it is this twin method of categorizing PCs that has resulted in the divergence of opinion as to which company sold more in the second quarter of 2018.

The state of 2018 global PC demand

During Q1 this year, the PC market continued its downward streak, much to the disappointment of the industry. And China was seen as being the biggest reason for the lack of growth. “The major contributor to the decline came from China, where unit shipments declined 5.7 percent year over year… This was driven by China’s business market, where some state-owned and large enterprises postponed new purchases or upgrades, awaiting new policies and officials’ reassignments after the session of the National People’s Congress in early March,” Gadgets Now quotes Mikako Kitagawa, the principal analyst at Gartner.

HP is outdoing lenovo in the PC market.
During Q1 this year, the PC market continued its downward streak, much to the disappointment of the industry. (Image: via Wikipedia)

However, as far as global PC sales in the second quarter are concerned, there is some good news — the second quarter showed year-on-year growth. And this comes as a relief for the industry, since it is the first time since Q1 2012 that PC sales have grown on a quarterly year-on-year basis.  

“Although traditional PCs may not be the default device for many usage scenarios, the market continues to show pockets of resiliency as PC usage experience evolves and improves… Even certain types of desktops are seeing growth amid this business-driven refresh cycle,” The Verge quotes Jay Chou, a research manager at IDC.  

For now, it seems that although consumer interest in PCs is not showing any major growth, the commercial demand is helping to keep the PC market stabilized. And even in the consumer segment, niches like gaming systems and premium notebooks have also shown promising growth.

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