If you want to look for the positive angle to the increasingly depressing PC market, here’s maybe the only one: in the second quarter of 2013, the 75.6 million PC shipped during the period only represents a 11.4 percent drop compared in the last year, compared to the worst-ever 14 percent year over year decrease achieved in the first quarter of this year. IDC published these numbers Wednesday in its Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker report for Q2 2013.
Now, obviously that’s still bad; it’s just slightly less bad than last quarter. Even Lenovo, which for the first time surpassed HP to become the world’s largest PC maker, still had a rough go of it with worldwide shipments during the quarter: it decreased 1.4 percent.
But all of the major PC brands saw much of the same, as this chart shows:
IDC pinned most of the blame on Microsoft’s struggles with converting traditional PC users to Windows 8 and customers’ growing preference for tablets over laptops and desktops, which has been the same story for several consecutive quarters:
The numbers reflect a market that is still struggling with the transition to touch-based systems running Windows 8 as well as justifying ultrabook prices in the face of economic pressures and competition from tablets and other devices.
The story in the U.S. was a bit better: PC makers’ shipments in total dropped off just 1.9 percent in the last year. Two bright spots were Dell and Lenovo, both of which were the only ones among the U.S. top five brands to see positive gains in shipments from the second quarter of last year.
Apple continued the holding pattern we saw start to develop last quarter. After years of positive growth for its Mac shipments, in the first quarter Apple saw its shipments shrink 7.5 percent, at least according to IDC. In Q2, its shipments were off just a half percent, or basically even, from a year ago.