Apple becomes No. 3 PC maker in US


Research group Gartner released preliminary PC shipment results for the fourth quarter of 2011, showing that Apple climbed to third place among U.S. PC vendors as the rest of the top five vendors saw shipments decline year over year. Apple saw 20.7 percent growth of Mac sales in the U.S. market from the year ago quarter, and took the No. 3 spot behind HP and Dell.

However, customers shied away from the world's largest PC maker in the fourth quarter, causing a 26.1 percent decline year over year. Shipments fell from 5.6 million in the last quarter of 2010 to 4.1 million. Dell had a 4.5 percent decline in shipments from 4.2 million in the year ago quarter to 4.0 million in the most recent quarter.

“While economic uncertainty in Western Europe had an effect on consumer PC shipments, expectations of a healthier economic outlook in North America could not stimulate consumer PC demand in that region," principal analyst Mikako Kitagawa said. "The healthy professional PC market as well as growth in emerging markets could not compensate for the weaknesses in mature markets, with overall growth still negative.”

Interestingly, but Gartner blames a lack of consumer interest in Intel's new ultrabook initiative for the slowdown in overall PC sales.

“Ultrabooks were quietly introduced into the market during the 4Q11 holiday season,” Kitagawa said. “Ultrabooks didn’t seem to draw consumers’ attention. Consumers had very little understanding and awareness of ultrabooks, and only a small group of consumers was willing to pay the price premium for such models."

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Written by Svetlana Osipova

Thursday, January 12, 2012. 13:14

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