Manufacturers pushed gaming PCs pretty hard in recent years as sales of these systems bucked the overall trend but that's no longer the case as a new research report from IDC indicates sell fell 6.2 percent year-over-year in Q1 2019. IDC believes this is temporary, gaming desktop PC sales are expected to climb from 15.4 million this year to 17.5 million in 2023, while gaming laptop sales are seen soaring from 19.4 million units to 27.2 million. Gaming monitors are expected to climb from 6.8 million to 10.7 million in the same timeframe.
Worldwide shipments of gaming desktops and notebooks reached 7.5 million units during the first quarter of 2019 (1Q19), down 6.2% from last year as the market was plagued with inventory issues. Meanwhile, gaming monitors grew 48.6% during the same period thanks to growing demand for second or external displays, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Gaming Tracker.
During the quarter, 3.5 million new gaming desktops were shipped, down 10.6% from last year. The decline is largely attributed to an oversupply of GPUs, leading to more upgrades than replacements of desktops, as well as macroeconomic headwinds in large markets like China. Meanwhile, notebooks declined 2% year over year as many gamers lay in wait for new GPUs to be implemented in mobile systems. The top 5 companies for gaming PCs during the quarter were HP, Lenovo, Dell, Asus, and Acer. Together these companies captured 62.9% of the gaming PC market during the quarter, up from 58.4% last year.
"Despite the recent downturn in the gaming PC market, we anticipate a rebound in the second half of the year as inventory issues clear out and new products hit store shelves," said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC's Mobile Device Trackers "To date, uptake of Nvidia's RTX graphics cards has been relatively slow given the dearth of content. However, that's expected to change in the coming year as many of the AAA titles will support ray tracing, enticing gamers to purchase newer systems."
"Growth in mid-priced systems is also expected to push the market forward and that's where new CPUs and GPUs from AMD are expected to shine," added Ubrani. "AMD's resurgence in the PC market is also expected to carry over into the gaming market as the company's technology investments from recent years are finally coming to fruition and offering both Intel and Nvidia some serious competition when it comes to performance per dollar."
Looking ahead, IDC anticipates the market for gaming desktops, notebooks, and monitors will grow 7.3% for the full year of 2019, reaching 41.5 million units. The rise of eSports, new business models such as subscription services, and an abundance of video games will continue to drive the market forward, reaching 55.3 million units by 2023 with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.4%. Among the various product types, shipments of gaming desktops are forecast to reach 17.5 million in 2023 with a CAGR of 3.2%. Meanwhile, gaming notebooks will grow to 27.2 million in 2023 as demand continues to shift towards thin and light solutions. To take advantage of the computing prowess of the new PCs, gamers are also expected to purchase newer displays. IDC forecasts gaming monitors will grow to 10.7 million in 2023 with a CAGR of 12.1%.