updated 04:30 pm EDT, Wed July 15, 2009
IDC Prelim Q2 2009
Apple has sunk a full position in the US computer market during the spring, according to early estimates by IDC. The Mac producer is expected to have dropped from fourth place in the winter to fifth in the spring as it should have shipped 12.4 percent fewer computers than it did a year earlier, falling to 1.21 million Macs. Its market share is poised to remain the same at 7.6 percent but will have been eclipsed by Toshiba, which could jump over a full percentage point to ship 7.7 percent of PCs in the US.
Of the top five, the only other firm to lose market share is predicted to be Dell. If accurate, Dell would still have the lead with 26.3 percent of the market but will have shipped 18.9 percent fewer PCs than it did in spring 2008 and would have shipped just 40,000 more computers than HP at 4.17 million. HP's deliveries are still anticipated as being near flat at 2.3 percent growth from year to year, though the lack of change was enough for Dell to at least temporarily regain a lead it had lost in winter of this year.
Acer will have grown the quickest under these estimates, jumping exactly 51 percent to reach nearly 2.01 million PCs shipped and 12.6 percent of the American market.
Overall, the country's computer business will have shrunk about 3 percent compared to a year earlier. The news is hailed as positive by IDC, which had expected worse due to the economic fallout, but with mixed results. As retail shopping was still strong and gave a boost to notebook sales, desktops and business sales as a whole were slower than predicted earlier.
IDC wouldn't speculate on each brand, but it's commonly believed that the relatively high prices of Macs hurt Apple for most of the quarter, steering those still sensitive to the economy towards lower cost brands or else keeping them from buying altogether. Sweeping MacBook Pro updates that included lower prices only came in mid-June and were unlikely to have had a significant impact. Companies like Acer, meanwhile, have already focused heavily on budget portables; it specifically is the leader in netbooks, which may represent as much as one quarter of the market by the end of the year.
Dell couldn't claim a similar lead worldwide and saw the gap between itself and continued leader HP widen further compared to a year ago. HP is likely to have shipped about 13.1 million PCs and earned 19.8 percent of the global industry where Dell will have shipped 9.11 million PCs and collected 13.7 percent of the market. Acer, Lenovo and Toshiba should all have grown but will maintain their respective third, fourth and fifth places with 12.7 percent, 8.7 percent and 5.3 percent of the wider field.
No data is available for those outside of the top five companies on the international stage, including Apple.
The world PC market dropped at about the same rate as the US, at 3.1 percent, and was again seen as a positive as it indicated that the public was continuing to buy new computers; few firms could link larger shipments to attempts to clear out excess stock. IDC had originally feared a drop of 6.3 percent.