US PC Shipments Hit; Declined 28% Y-o-Y in 1Q23

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  • Strong iPad performance led tablets shipments to perform relatively better
  • Canalys forecasts the US PC shipments in 2024 to be 13% higher than in 2023

According to the latest report from Canalys, PC shipments (desktops, notebooks and workstations) in the first quarter of 2023 in the United States of America declined 28% year-on-year to 14.0 million units. While noting that the shipments of Notebook (including mobile workstations) fell 31% to 11.4 million units, and the shipments of desktops (including desktop workstations) fell 28% to 2.7 million units, it said that tablets performed relatively better. Given Apple’s strong iPad performance, tablet shipments dropped just 7% to 10.8 million units.

As per the Principal Analyst at Canalys, Ishan Dutt, a confluence of factors led to the US PC market bottoming out at the start of 2023. He said, “The expected seasonal drop after the holidays coincided with the channel finalizing its inventory correction, resulting in muted sell-in of PCs. On the commercial front, businesses continue to grapple with economic pressures, including three further interest rate hikes since the start of the year. Budget-conscious organizations have extended the life cycle of their existing PCs, with many opting only for critical upgrades.”

Nevertheless, for Q4 2023, Canalys forecasted the US PC shipments to grow 6% year-on-year. Full-year shipments in 2024 are expected to be 13% higher than in 2023.

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Dutt opines that there are already positive signs for the industry. “Inflation has dropped below 5% early in Q2 2023, and there are signals that monetary policy will not tighten further. Business sentiment is improving and commercial demand for PCs is set to re-emerge in the second half of the year. Vendors have reported that end-user device activations rates are relatively strong, which bodes well for shipment volumes once the tail-end of elevated inventories has been worked through. There will be a boost from the education sector during the back-to-school season, mostly benefiting Chromebooks. As we move toward 2024, the transition away from Windows 10 will also become a significant factor for device refreshes. As of Q1 2023, most US channel partners surveyed by Canalys reported that Windows 11 has not yet been a major driver of PC sales. Vendors with broad product portfolios, strong channel management and healthy levels of supply will be well positioned to take advantage of the resurgence in demand.”

Canalys is an independent analyst company which delivers smart market insights to IT, channel and service provider professionals around the world.


 

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