Analysts Cast Doubt on 20% Mac Market Share Claims

Data from two leading research firms has cast doubt on claims that Apple's retail market share has reached 21%, a claim originating from a 1394 Trade Association release praising Apple's use of Firewire 800 ports on the new iMac. The industry group claimed that Apple's share in the consumer market had reached 21%. A group spokesperson confirmed the figure to, citing a CNBC report that also listed HP's consumer retail market share at 37 per cent and Dell's at 11%. The group contends that the figures are only for retail sales, though that would still not account for an 11% share from Dell, which does virtually all its business directly.

However, data from other research firms appears to contradict 1394 Trade Association's claims. IDC analyst Doug Bell told that his firm recorded Apple's consumer market share for all of 2006 at just 6.3%, with HP's at 27.5%and Dell's at 25.5%. In the first quarter of 2007, Apple saw its market share grow, but only to 7.6%. IDC does not yet have data from Q2. Research firm Gartner also cast doubt on the possibility that Apple's market share had exploded. The firm did not yet have consumer-specific data for Q2 available, but the company did not have Apple among the top five in total sales. CNBC could not be reached to verify the aforementioned report.

Apple said that it sold 1.517 million Macintoshes in Q2, representing just 2.5%of the 61 million PC sales logged by Gartner. HP's market share was listed at 18.2%and Dell's at 15%.

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