Both Gartner and IDC report the PC market returned to growth in the second quarter of this year. First up is the report from IDC, this analyst outfit claims shipments rose 4.7 percent to 64.9 million units last quarter. Several reasons are found, including the tariff threat, businesses upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 10, and higher supply of Intel CPUs.
"Supply for Intel's processors improved markedly during the quarter, allowing most PC vendors to fulfill old orders while also shipping a healthy supply of new PCs into the channels," said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC's Mobile Device Trackers. "Additionally, the threat of increased tariffs led some PC makers to ship a surplus of desktops and notebooks, thereby artificially propping up the PC market during the second quarter."
However, higher than anticipated growth was not driven solely by changes in the supply chain. "With the January 2020 end of service (EOS) date for Windows 7 approaching, the market has entered the last leg of the Windows 7 to Windows 10 commercial migrations," noted Linn Huang, research vice president, Devices & Displays. "However, the closing sprint is unlikely to generate the spike seen when Windows XP met its EOS because we are further ahead of the migration with two quarters to go. Still, organizations looking to finish their migration will create new opportunities for the market in the coming quarters."
Gartner on the other hand talks about a 1.5 percent increase in shipments to 63 million units. Gartner says demand was driven by businesses upgrading to Windows 10 PCs and also observed a positive impact from the easing of Intel's CPU shortage.
“Worldwide PC shipments growth was driven by demand from the Windows 10 refresh in the business market in the second quarter of 2019. Desktop PC growth was strong, which offset a decline in mobile PC shipments,” said Mikako Kitagawa, senior principal analyst at Gartner.
“Additionally, there are signs that the Intel CPU shortage is easing, which has been an ongoing impact to the market for the past 18 months. The shortage mainly impacted small and midsize vendors as large vendors took advantage and continued to grow, taking market share away from the smaller vendors that struggled to secure CPUs.”