PC slump shows no sign of slowing, Gartner says

A 10.9 percent drop marks the fifth consecutive quarter of shipment declines, the longest duration of a drop in the PC market's history.

Lenovo is back in the top spot for market share, but just barely. Josh Miller/CNET

There's no sign that the plunge in the PC market is going to end anytime soon. In fact, it just keeps going and going.

Worldwide PC shipments fell to 76 million units in the second quarter of 2013, a 10.9 percent drop from the same period last year, Gartner reported Wednesday. That's the fifth consecutive quarter of shipment declines, marking the longest duration of a drop in the PC market's history.

Research firm IDC, meanwhile, echoed Gartner's gloomy sentiment, saying worldwide shipments fell 11.4 percent compared with the same quarter this past year.

As if that weren't enough, all regions continued to see a nosedive, despite improving economic conditions in some areas, Gartner reported. The culprit? Gartner points to more consumers turning to tablets and smartphones as their gadgets of choice for going online.

Here's what principal analyst Mikako Kitagawa had to say about the decline:

We are seeing the PC market reduction directly tied to the shrinking installed base of PCs, as inexpensive tablets displace the low-end machines used primarily for consumption in mature and developed markets. In emerging markets, inexpensive tablets have become the first computing device for many people, who at best are deferring the purchase of a PC. This is also accounting for the collapse of the mini notebook market.

Despite the slump for all PC makers, Lenovo still managed to hold onto its top spot, beating longtime rival Hewlett-Packard.

In the second quarter, according to Gartner, Lenovo's unit sales slipped 0.6 percent, which meant it saw the narrowest loss -- though not by much. It posted a market share of 16.7 percent, compared with 14.9 percent in the year-ago second quarter. HP was close behind, with 16.3 percent market share and global shipment declines of 4.8 percent, while Dell had 11.8 percent share after seeing a 3.9 percent decrease.

 

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