IDC and Gartner: Q3 2013 PC shipments not as bad as predicted, but still bad

Lenovo, the world's biggest PC maker, will release a number of new Windows 8.1 products this fall like the ThinkPad Yoga.

This week's hardware shipment numbers for the third quarter of 2013 may not been as bad as some in the PC industry had predicted, but it was still mostly bad news. The research firms of IDC and Gartner revealed that worldwide shipments of PCs went down during the July-September time period, which marks the sixth straight quarter of declines.

IDC stated that the total number of PC shipments came in at 81.6 million units for the last quarter, down 7.6 percent from the same period a year ago. That number is actually better than the 9.5 percent decline that IDC had previously predicted would happen during the last three months. It added, "While shipments remained weak during the early part of the quarter, the market was somewhat buoyed by business purchases, as well as channel intake of Windows 8.1-based systems during September."

Gartner claimed that its own PC shipment numbers showed 80.3 million units were sent out worldwide in the third quarter, down 8.6 percent from a year ago. Gartner's assessment was more bleak than IDC's, stating that "... sales this quarter dropped to their lowest volume since 2008."

Lenovo is still the world's largest PC maker, according to both research firms, followed by HP and Dell. All three companies experienced a small amount of unit sales growth during the quarter while the fourth and fifth biggest PC makers, Acer and Asus, got hit with huge declines in sales.

As for fourth quarter 2013 PC shipment predictions, IDC says they have "hopes for a small increase" but they think that will be "followed by a challenging 2014."

Source: IDC and Gartner | Image via Lenovo

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