The global PC shipment market has experienced a marked decline over the past year amid deteriorating economic conditions, but there could still be light at the end of the tunnel for manufacturers in the space.
An earnings report from Lenovo this week painted a dire picture of the current state of the market, with the firm recording a 24% dip in revenue across the first quarter of its financial year.
This decrease exceeded an already pessimistic outlook by analysts, and marks four consecutive quarters of decline for the manufacturer.
Last year, Lenovo recorded a 14% dip in annual revenue amid a long-running market slump that saw counterparts in the space record concerning figures.
Dell, ASUS, Acer, and HP all recorded negative growth over the last year, indicating that this current slump has been indiscriminate across the board for major suppliers.
However, despite what appears to be a bleak outlook for firms, Lenovo remains optimistic that stability will return to the market in the coming months.
“The group’s PC business is stabilizing and well-positioned for a year-on-year recovery in the later part of 2023,” Lenovo said in a statement this week.
The firm noted, however, that the global PC market is “regressing to pre-COVID levels” in the short-term, but could still remain at a “level structurally higher” than pre-pandemic conditions in the long-term.
Lenovo’s optimistic outlook appears to point toward a tentative return to profitability for the major manufacturers in the space - and recent analysis supports this position.
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Q2 data from Canalys showed that the total shipments of desktops and notebooks dipped by 11.5% year-on-year to around 62 million units worldwide.
The slide follows two quarters of concerning market activity which saw a respective decline of over 30%. But while this paints a negative picture, Canalys noted that Q2 actually represented a “sequential increase” in shipments.
This, the consultancy said, shows that the “market is on track for accelerated recovery” in the second half of the year.
Gartner research on market conditions aligns closely with that of Canalys, and points toward progress in the space.
ITPro spoke to analysts at Gartner who pointed to the company's August 2023 research that showed “the rate of decline in the PC market has slowed”.
Analysis from the firm found that shipment volumes may have reached their lowest point to date, and that the industry will see a “gradual increase” in demand in the coming months.
Gartner said it expects PC inventories will normalize by the end of 2023 and that a return to growth will occur in early 2024.
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Ross Kelly is ITPro's News & Analysis Editor, responsible for leading the brand's news output and in-depth reporting on the latest stories from across the business technology landscape. Ross was previously a Staff Writer, during which time he developed a keen interest in cyber security, business leadership, and emerging technologies.
He graduated from Edinburgh Napier University in 2016 with a BA (Hons) in Journalism, and joined ITPro in 2022 after four years working in technology conference research.