We live in a world where most employed people own a smartphone, but that doesn’t mean that we’re ready to abandon computers in the workplace just yet. What do statistics suggest will be the dominant trends in PC purchases for business this year?
Picture: Getty Images/Carl Court
Gartner’s recently-released first-quarter sales figures for PCs worldwide provide some indication. While global sales were down 5.2 per cent compared to the first quarter last year, that doesn’t necessarily sound the death knell for PCs. Sales last year were boosted because many companies were finally migrating from Windows XP and purchasing new hardware at the same time.
The major growth areas are in mobile devices, particularly hybrids. As Gartner analyst Mikako Kitagawa noted in a statement announcing the figures:
Mobile PCs, including notebooks, hybrid and Windows tablets, grew compared with a year ago . . . Mobile PCs are being driven by a separate underlying replacement cycle, which led mobile growth in the first quarter. PC replacements will be driven by thin and light notebooks with tablet functionality. Our early study suggests strong growth of hybrid notebooks, especially in mature markets, in 1Q15.
Australia definitely qualifies as a mature market, so we can expect to see that hybrid trend here. This would also be consistent with a decline in sales for standalone tablets, which are useful but aren’t devices most businesses or individuals feel compelled to replace regularly.
|Manufacturer||Q1 2015 Shipments||Q1 2015 Market Share (%)||Q1 2014 Shipments||Q1 2014 Market Share (%)||YOY Growth (%)|
One other issue with this data: it’s becoming increasingly difficult to define what a “PC” is. These figures don’t include Chromebooks or sub-10-inch Windows tablets, though both might well replace PCs in some environments.