Demand for PCs, tablets and smartphones will fall in 2016

Device shipments across the world will grow 1.9 per cent in 2016 to 2.4 billion, but spending on PCs, tablets and smartphones will decline for the first time ever, according to Gartner.

The fall of 0.5 per cent in end-user spending will come as vendors target poorer mature markets like Russia, Japan and Brazil, Gartnersaid.

By the end of 2016, 82 per cent of mobile phones will be smartphones a rise of 12 per cent year-on-year. Users with basic smartphones are choosing to replace them with other basic models, instead of switching to high-end devices.

Roberta Cozza, research director at Gartner, said: "Constant end-user spending on mobile phones is expected to increase by 1.2 per cent in 2016, but its growth will not be strong enough for overall end-user device spend to achieve growth in 2016.

"We are witnessing a shift to basic phones in the smartphone market. Users are also opting to replace within the basic smartphone category without necessarily moving to high-end smartphones, especially in China and some other emerging markets."

In addition to this, the global PC shipment market is expected to reach 287 million units this year, which marks a decline of one per cent year-over-year, yet it is on course to increase four per cent in 2017.

This boost is due to the rise of premium lightweight laptops ('ultramobiles'), and fast adoption of Windows 10 among businesses.

Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner, said: "Ultramobile premium devices are expected to drive the PC market forward with the move to Windows 10 and PCs built around Intel's Skylake architecture.

"We expect that businesses will deploy Windows 10 faster than with previous Windows upgrades. Given the shorter testing and evaluation period many businesses could start to migrate by the end of 2016.

"By the end of 2017, many businesses are looking to move as much as 40 per cent of their installed base onto new Windows 10 devices, mainly driven by the appeal hybrid touch-screen 2-1. This will be the catalyst for growth in the PC market in 2017."

Caroline Preece

Caroline has been writing about technology for more than a decade, switching between consumer smart home news and reviews and in-depth B2B industry coverage. In addition to her work for IT Pro and Cloud Pro, she has contributed to a number of titles including Expert Reviews, TechRadar, The Week and many more. She is currently the smart home editor across Future Publishing's homes titles.

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