2020 and 2021 have so far been kind to the PC market that previously found itself battling for survival against mobile devices. While desktops and laptops will always have a place in the tech industry, recent changes to working and studying arrangements have cause PC shipments to spike and grow over the last year and a half. Although that growth is starting to slow down, the PC market still managed to grow in the second quarter of 2021, despite the ongoing component supply shortage affecting many industries around the world.
The way the global chip shortage has been cited as the reason for manufacturing and supply issues, you’d think it was doomsday for many industries that rely on semiconductors and related components. There are, of course, some unfavorable consequences to this supply problem, but PC manufacturers have seemingly found a way to work around those limitations. If these figures are any indication, the PC market continues to be healthy despite those setbacks.
Gartner says that PC worldwide shipments grew by 4.6% in the second quarter of 2021 compared to the same period last year, with the market shipping around 71.6 million PCs, excluding Chromebooks. Canalys rates the growth higher at 12.8%, with a shipment figure of 82.3 million desktops, notebooks, and workstations shipped. Perhaps IDC’s numbers are the most optimistic at 13.2% and 83.6 million units.
This growth has largely been attributed to rising demand in the commercial segment as businesses start to recover from the effects of the pandemic. In contrast, consumer demand has started to slow down and taper off now that most have purchased the PCs they need for work or school. It isn’t all rosy for the PC market in general, either, as the Q2 2021 growth rate was noted to be slower compared to the past two quarters.
Lenovo continues to have a strong lead in the PC market, with HP not that far behind. Apple remains at fourth but is expected to have an even more favorable future as interest and demand for its ARM-based M1 Macs grow.