It looks like 2013 will be another bad year for PCs. Shipments of PCs is expected to decline yet again this year, but only by about 1.3%. The IDC reports that this is due to the lack of enthusiastic response to Windows 8, and also due to the struggling economy. While IDC reports that PC sales are going downhill, it looks like smartphone sales are still growing at a rapid pace and at a pace that won't slow down until around the year 2017.
IDC states that emerging markets are no longer buying PCs and at an increasing rate. It also states that sales of PCs in emerging markets are nearing the same sales figures as those in the mature markets. In the IDC smartphone forecast, you can see that emerging markets play a huge role in sales as many countries begin adapting to newer technologies. In Q4 2012, there was a year-over-year decline of 8.3% in PC shipments, which is a huge decline considering Q4 is holiday season.
PC shipments are expected to only experience growth in the single digit percentile all the way through 2017. Total shipments of PCs are expected to equal around 207.1 million in emerging markets for this year. Total shipments for PCs are expected to reach around 138.7 million for mature markets like the United States. All in all, there should be around 345.8 million PCs sold this year worldwide. The second half of this year we should be seeing a slight increase in PC sale momentum.
PCs aren't like smartphones, where people replace them every 1-2 years (or every 4-5 months for me). The average user can stick to the same PC for years to come, and they see no point in spending nearly a thousand dollars on a new PC when their current one is already capable of doing the regular tasks, like web browsing, online-shopping, document editing, etc.