In the U.S. market, PC shipments totaled 14.1 million units in the first quarter of 2014, a 2.1 percent increase from the same period last year (see Table 2). HP maintained the No. 1 position, as it accounted for 25 percent of PC shipments in the U.S. market. Dell and Lenovo experienced the strongest growth among the top five vendors, with growth rates of 13.2 and 16.8 percent.
"In terms of the major structural shift of the PC market, the U.S. market is ahead of other regions," Ms. Kitagawa said. "The installed base of PCs started declining in 2013, while the worldwide installed base still grew. The U.S. PC market has been highly saturated with devices: 99 percent of households own at least one or more desktops or laptops, and more than half of them own both. While tablet penetration is expected to reach 50 percent in 2014, some consumer spending could return to PCs."
The overall international PC market fared worse than the U.S., a reversal of last quarter as tablets continue to eat into PC sales. Internationally, Lenovo, Dell, Asus and HP all saw solid market share growth at the expense of Acer and the rest of the market. Gartner considers PCs to include desktop and notebooks, including x86 tablets equipped with Windows 8, but excluding Chromebooks and other tablets like the iPad.
The data is preliminary, meaning Gartner can revise its numbers based on market conditions. Last year the firm revised its preliminary Apple numbers by more than two share points because the newly introduced iMac was in extremely short supply.
Separately, IDC reported similar overall trends, with Apple seeing its U.S. PC market share dropping to 10.3%, down from 11% last year. Globally, the firm saw the PC market shrink by 4.4 percent.
Apple has not updated any of its Mac products since early last fall.