Windows 10 adoption will spur PC sales, says Gartner

Windows 10 startup screen on a monitor

The PC market is set to return to growth as businesses adopt Windows 10 to improve security and hardware, according to Gartner.

While the analyst firm expects PC shipments to hit 2.3 billion this year, a year-on-year drop of 0.3%, this is a slower rate of decline because it will be alleviated by organisations migrating to Windows 10, while the operating system will drive a 1.6% growth in the market in 2018, hitting 2.4 billion devices.

"PC buyers continue to put quality and functionality ahead of price," Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner, said. "Many organisations are coming to the end of their evaluation periods for Windows 10, and are now increasing the speed at which they adopt new PCs as they see the clear benefits of better security and newer hardware."

Another contributing factor is the increasing price of components. As it becomes more expensive for people to replace DRAM memory and SSD hard drives in existing machines, they are opting to buy whole new PCs instead. PC manufacturers are helping the situation too, by absorbing the increased costs into their production prices, making new machines cheaper in comparison.

Other insights from Gartner's report revealed smartphone shipments are set from strong growth this year as customers opt to purchase low-end and premium smartphones rather than feature phones. The 'basic' smartphone market will grow by 6.8% year-on-year, while shipments of both premium and the more basic smartphones are expected to increase by 5% compared to 2016.

"Overall, the shipment growth of the device market is steady for the first time in many years," Atwal added. "PC shipments are slightly lower while smartphone shipments are slightly higher — leading to a slight downward revision in shipments from the previous forecast."

Clare Hopping
Freelance writer

Clare is the founder of Blue Cactus Digital, a digital marketing company that helps ethical and sustainability-focused businesses grow their customer base.

Prior to becoming a marketer, Clare was a journalist, working at a range of mobile device-focused outlets including Know Your Mobile before moving into freelance life.

As a freelance writer, she drew on her expertise in mobility to write features and guides for ITPro, as well as regularly writing news stories on a wide range of topics.