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Worldwide Mac Sales Hold Steady as PC Market Sees Shipments Decline 9.6% in Q1 2016

Amid a decline in worldwide PC shipments, Apple's Mac sales have held steady, according to new PC shipping estimates from Gartner. During the first quarter of 2016, Apple shipped 4.6 million Macs worldwide and held 7.1 percent of the market, up from 4.56 million Mac shipments and 6.4 percent of the market during the first quarter of 2015.

While Apple only saw 1 percent worldwide growth, it fared better than the overall PC market, which saw total worldwide shipments of 64.8 million, a 9.6 percent decline from 71.7 million shipments in Q1 2015. Among other vendors, Lenovo and HP saw some of the biggest shipment drops with 12.5 million and 11.4 million shipments in 1Q 2016, down from 13.5 million and 12.5 million, respectively, in the year-ago quarter.

gartner_1Q16_global
Gartner's Preliminary Worldwide PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 1Q16 (Thousands of Units)

With 7.1 percent of the market, Apple ranked as the number five worldwide vendor, coming in after Lenovo (19.3% share), HP (17.6% share), Dell (14.1% share), and ASUS (8.3% share). Other vendors, not ranked in the top five, accounted for 33.6 percent of the market.
The deterioration of local currencies against the U.S. dollar continued to play a major role in PC shipment declines. Our early results also show there was an inventory buildup from holiday sales in the fourth quarter of 2015," said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner.
While Apple's worldwide numbers were steady, Mac sales in the United States appear to have dipped slightly. According to Gartner's data, Apple shipped 1.666 million PCs in the United States, for 12.7 percent of the market. That's down from 1.672 million in the year-ago quarter, but market share is up from 11.8 percent.

gartner_1Q16_us
Gartner's Preliminary U.S. PC Vendor Unit Shipment Estimates for 1Q16 (Thousands of Units)

Dell, the number one vendor in the U.S., shipped 3.5 million PCs in Q1 2016 for 26.3 percent of the market, while HP shipped 3.1 million for 23.7 percent of the market. Lenovo saw the greatest growth with 1.9 million shipments and 14.5 percent of the market, while ASUS saw a decline in shipments from 770,000 in Q1 2015 to 667,000 in Q1 2016 for just 5.1 percent of the market.

In the overall U.S. PC market, shipments totaled 13.1 million in the first quarter of 2016, a decline of 6.6 percent compared to the year-ago quarter and the lowest shipment volume in the country in three years.

gartner_1Q16_us_trend
Apple's U.S. Market Share Trend: 1Q06-1Q16 (Gartner)

IDC also released its shipment estimates today, and as is typical, its numbers are different than Gartner's numbers, in part due to the difference in the way Windows-based tablets are counted by each firm. According to IDC, worldwide PC shipments totaled 60.6 million, for an overall decline of 11.5 percent.

While Gartner ranks Apple as number five vendor in worldwide PC shipments, IDC ranks Apple as number four with 4.5 million shipments and 7.4 percent of the market (a decline from 4.6 million shipments in Q1 2015), edging out ASUS's 4.4 million shipments. As for U.S. shipments, IDC puts the total number at 13.625 million, an overall decline of 5.8 percent.

IDC's U.S. shipment estimates are more favorable to Apple, suggesting PC shipments totaling 1.8 million and 13 percent market share for growth of 5.6 percent rather than the slight decline Gartner estimates. Like Gartner, IDC lists Dell (3.5m shipments), HP (3.5m shipments), Lenovo (1.9m shipments), and Apple (1.8m shipments) as the top four PC vendors in the United States, but IDC positions Acer Group (711,000 shipments) as the number five vendor while Gartner lists it as ASUS.

It's important to note that data from Gartner and IDC is preliminary and that the numbers can shift, sometimes dramatically, while other times, the estimates are closer to the actual data. Last year, for example, Gartner estimated Apple's Q1 2015 U.S. PC shipments to be 1.670 million, fairly close to the correct 1.672 million shipment number.

Tags: IDC, Gartner


Top Rated Comments

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29 months ago

The stories always make me happy. The greater market share the Mac has the more attention it will get from developers. Hopefully many windows only applications will become cross platform and many of the current programs that have inferior Mac versions will finally get developers attention.


These stories don't make me happy.

It reaffirms a philosophy of eeking out updates, watering down specs and cutting corners at every opportunity. (See the MacBook, iMac and Mac Mini) A decease in sales may compel some action. This type of news means more of the same.
Rating: 18 Votes
29 months ago
here's a crazy idea... update your stuff! The mac pro is only how many years old..SMH
Rating: 12 Votes
29 months ago
I buy macs on behalf of clients and I still can't believe apple screwed us with 5400 RPM drives in the thin iMacs from 2014.
Rating: 11 Votes
29 months ago
That's pretty amazing, given how behind Apple is with upgrading a lot of the computers (Air, MBP, MP, etc.). I know a LOT of people who are waiting for the new MBP/MB - let's hope Apple doesn't disappoint.
Rating: 10 Votes
29 months ago
Here's my ideal Mac lineup:
First you trim down all the bezels on the laptops. That means a 12" screen fits in (what used to be) an 11" body. A 14" screen fits in (what used to be) a 13" body. 16" screen fits in (what used to be) a 15" body. Laptops would stay the same sizes but every screen would be bigger. Go retina across the board. Kill the Air.
That leaves you with:

MacBook 12"
MacBook Pro 14" & 16"


That clears up a lot of SKUs even if they keep doing colours. Neat and tidy.


Now for desktops.

A nice redesign on the iMac. Nothing mind blowing. Just beautiful 23" for the small one and 28" at the large size. We're removing bezel across the board! And just call it a Mac.

Do a complete rethink on the Mac Pro. Time to give people the expandable Mac they never thought Apple would do. At this point, why not? Give gadget sites the headline "Apple's new Mac Pro out PCs every PC". They could make it lesser margin Mac. They'd certainly make up for it in volume over the current Mac Pro. It could be a powerhouse PC in the traditional sense. Run VR like a champ. Do 3D, simulations, crunch video... Something power users wouldn't feel guilty about. Very un-Apple and it would garner them massive praise.

Have a nice 23" & 28" 5K Cinema "Mac" Display to go along with that.

Let's say that's:

Mac 23" & 28"
Mac Pro
Mac Display 23" & 28"



So much sanity.

On the OS side, Apple has an interesting opportunity since Microsoft is doing the compromised route with Windows (grandma friendly tablet OS mixed with power user OS).
"Mac OS 11" could have a few more power user features. Would make newer Windows versions more toy-like in comparison.
"iPhone OS" can continue on its good trajectory. Evolutionary updates.
"iPad OS" could more closely resemble Windows with dual work modes to defend against encroaching Surface. You could lock it to touch mode if you didn't want to make it work like a traditional computer.
Rating: 7 Votes
29 months ago

Seriously, people here act like apple has to pump out the newest processors in their line instead of waiting for an overall better package.


Because putting out a $3000 MBP with Haswell and an outdated AMD Radeon chip is acceptable? If they're charging premium for the laptops, then yes, I expect as a customer for Apple to put the newest processors.
Rating: 5 Votes
29 months ago
Apple Mac worldwide marketshare increasing. The Mac business alone would make Apple a Fortune 50 company, even if iPhone sales went to zero. Apple must be doomed.
Rating: 4 Votes
29 months ago

Anecdotally among the non-geeks that you know, why are PC shipments falling?

Computers last longer these days? Not much reason to replace a PC is it still works? It's a mature market with not many people buying their first PC ever?

There are a lot of factors involved.

We're talking about one quarter where 65 million PCs were shipped... but the year before 71 million were shipped.

A person might only buy a new PC once every 3-4 years. But people bought 720,000 PCs every day last quarter.

I don't think there's any single reason why shipments are lower this year versus last year.
Rating: 4 Votes
29 months ago

Anecdotally among the non-geeks that you know, why are PC shipments falling?


Because less people are buying them.
Rating: 3 Votes
29 months ago

Cook was making inroads with IBM. He really needs to keep pushing forward with the business market. There's definitely demand there for getting rid of the PCs and using Macs. It's become vastly more acceptable and wanted.


There is no space in the business world for machines that have to update on the vendor's schedule and run the OS version the vendor tells you is the latest.

If El Capitan breaks some custom app an intern wrote 10 years ago and Apple won't let the company buy a new computer with Mountain Lion that will support that App, then Apple is just not viable in the enterprise. And on a larger scale, if everyone at the company is using Mountain Lion and they need to add new machines, they better also be Mountain Lion until the company is ready to migrate. You don't force all your users onto a new OS with all the transition pains when it's not necessary.

And it should go without saying these older OSes need security updates for the enterprise clients.

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Overall it looks like the winners here are Apple and Dell. Apple is seeing slightly more worldwide sales and slightly less US sales. Dell the reverse.

We all know why Apple is doing so well. But Dell? How are they still doing so well?


Dell offers everything from Ultrabooks to solid business machines with lots of ports and performance to high end gaming machines. They offer $300 flimsy plastic laptops for students and $3000 business laptops with a more solid build than Apple. They offer fairly cheap displays and 4k displays at a premium price and they offer them in Matte and Glossy. They offer laptops with user swappable batteries, ram, and hard drives. They offer laptops with optical drives and without.

Apple offers cute little ultrabooks with a pretty nice build and all the performance traded off in the name of size and cuteness. Apples are great for their market segment, but they only target a very narrow slice of the market while Dell makes something for everyone.
Rating: 3 Votes

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