PC, tablet, and smartphone growth set to shrink in 2022 due to a multitude of issues

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Gartner has predicted that PC, tablet, and smartphone shipments will decline by 9.5%, 9%, and 7.1% respectively this year as multiple issues come together to cool sales. It said out of all the regions, total shipment devices will see double-digit declines in China and Eastern Europe.

Inflation, the war in Ukraine, and supply shortages were some of the reasons Gartner has predicted such gloomy figures. In a statement, Ranjit Atwal, senior director analyst at Gartner, said:

“A perfect storm of geopolitics upheaval, high inflation, currency fluctuations and supply chain disruptions have lowered business and consumer demand for devices across the world and is set to impact the PC market the hardest in 2022. Consumer PC demand is on pace to decline 13.1% in 2022 and will plummet much faster than business PC demand, which is expected to decline 7.2% year over year.”

While the return to the office probably won’t do PC sales any favours – at least from customers looking for a machine for their home – smartphone sales should rebound in 2023 as the demand for 5G devices gets people spending. Gartner said that by next year, many people will be looking to replace their 4G devices which are starting to reach their end of life and will choose a 5G-equipped phone.

It said that sales of 5G phones will reach 710 million units, an increase of 29% compared to 2021 but still down compared to previous predictions. The analyst had predicted an increase of 47% at the start of the year but at 29% it means 95 million fewer 5G phones will be sold. Unfortunately, the company has not given a prediction about where it sees PC sales going in future years.

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