updated 11:55 am EST, Mon November 14, 2011
Gartner sees Apple, ASUS taking over European PCs
Apple and ASUS are cutting deeply into the European computer market, Gartner found on Monday. Apple was now in the top five in Western Europe, having seen its shipments this past summer jump 19.6 percent over the past year to get it 7.6 percent. ASUS was the only other company in the top five to gain share and grew roughly as quickly, with a 20.3 percent jump putting it above Dell at 10.6 percent of the computer space.
Every other top five entrant, as well as the "others" in the market, declined. Acer's over-reliance on netbooks and low-end notebooks was still being punished by the iPad, as its shipments dropped a steep 45.1 percent to put it at 15.2 percent, knocking it out of the top spot. Dell saw its shipments drop 10 percent and leave it near-flat at 9.8 percent share, and even the field's leader HP saw shipments drop 7.5 percent, even if this still let it gain share at Acer's expense to hit 22.7 percent.
Share in the UK specifically was more favorable to Apple as well. It moved up to fourth place in Britain, getting 7.8 percent. Samsung, already popular in Europe, grew a very fast 39 percent and came just short of Apple at 7.3 percent.
Acer's share fell even harder in Europe, dropping 53.1 percent to take it from the lead to a third place 11.3 percent in just one year. Apple didn't register in the top five in France and Germany, where Acer and HP fared better and smaller PC builders like Fujitsu and Toshiba could claim stakes. Overall, Western Europe dropped 10.8 percent, and major markets all declined.
PC builders couldn't blame overstock writeoffs for the share loss for the summer, since these had mostly been cleared out, Gartner said. Along with pointing to the decline of netbooks, it warned that such a dip during the back-to-school period was especially damaging at a time when computer shipments normally climb sharply. Researchers avoided mentioning the iPad by name but, in discussing French and German share, blamed the category it dominates for dropping share.
"As expected, back-to-school PC sales were disappointing as the popularity of non-PC devices, such as media tablets and smartphones, diverted consumer spending from PCs," principal analyst Meike Escherich said.