Apple only had 14 percent of the overall retail PC market in the first quarter of this year but figures from research firm NPD indicate the firm is truly massive in the premium PC market. NPD says that Apple has a marketshare of 66 percent in the premium retail PC category, this means laptops or desktops selling for $1,000 or more. Apple owns 70 percent of the premium retail desktop market and 64 percent of the premium notebook market!
Should I repeat those numbers? The share data is for first-quarter brick-and-mortar stores, as tabulated by the NPD Group. Apple's market share is but one measure of success. Sales growth is way up, while Windows desktop PC sales are way down.
"In notebooks they're growing two times the market," said Stephen Baker, NPD's vice president of industry analysis. "Windows notebooks are pretty much flat right now."
For the first quarter, Windows notebooks had "zero percent" growth year over year, Stephen said. By comparison, Apple notebooks had "50 to 60 percent growth."
On the desktop, "They're up 45 percent," he continued. "The [overall] market is down 20 percent. Windows desktops would be down 25 percent." The figures are also for first quarter.
I spoke with Stephen earlier this afternoon. He remarked: "iMacs are growing and the Windows desktop ain't. No matter how you look at it, Apple is outperforming Windows."
A statement like that raises the question: Is Windows Vista the problem? The operating system has met with a cool reception, even with Microsoft claiming 140 million licenses have been shipped.
"I don't believe that Vista's to blame," Stephen responded. "The vast majority of consumers don't care [about the installed operating system]."