WORLDWIDE shipments of personal computers increased 2.3 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier, continuing a 2019 trend fueled by commercial customers upgrading to Microsoft Corp.’s new operating system.
Lenovo Group Ltd. held onto the top spot with almost 25 percent of the market amid a quest by PC makers to find new types of machines to entice customers.
PC shipments climbed to 70.6 million units in the period that ended Dec. 31, researcher Gartner Inc. said Monday in a report. Competing firm IDC pegged the shipments at 71.8 million units, a 4.8 percent rise. For the year, the PC market grew for the first time since 2011, both firms said.
For a third consecutive quarter, manufacturers received a boost from corporate clients upgrading devices to get access to Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system.
With corporate upgrades expected to taper off this year, PC makers have searched for ways to shake up a market that has stagnated for years.
Beijing-based Lenovo last week debuted a laptop with a folding screen at the CES consumer technology show in Las Vegas. Dell Technologies Inc. also unveiled two concepts that featured folding screens.
HP Inc. maintained the global No. 2 spot with 22.8 percent of the market during the quarter. The U.S. company has sought to make its devices more stylish and has also entered the lucrative gaming PC market.
Dell was again the third-largest seller, and its 12 percent year-over-year increase in shipments was the biggest gain of any major manufacturer in the quarter. The company focuses on selling PCs to corporate clients, to bolster profit margins through add-on software and services.
Apple Inc. came in fourth place with 7.5 percent of the worldwide market.