Meanwhile, Dell overtakes Acer into second as retail strategy begins to pay dividends

HP retains worldwide laptop crown

Dell’s retail push has seen it regain second place in worldwide laptop shipments, after being displaced by Acer last year, according to the latest figures from DisplaySearch.

While Dell regained its position as the second largest vendor of laptops worldwide, Acer’s continued growth means that it is only 0.5 per cent behind its American rival. Both vendors are likely to continue to increase their marketshare, as Dell continues to increase its retail presence, as well as launch its channel program later this month, and Acer looks to take increased advantage of its Gateway and Packard Bell brands.

HP retained its position as number one in the laptop market, shipping 6.46 million units during the first quarter of 2008, compared to Dell’s 4.68 million and Acer’s 4.53 million laptops. Those figures are in contrast to the same time in 2007, when HP shipped 4.60 million units, Dell 3.23 million and Acer 3.42 million.

However, the biggest shifts occurred further down the chart, with Sony’s Vaio brand taking a battering, slipping from sixth in the third quarter in 2007 to ninth in the first quarter of 2008, with a 40 per cent rise in US shipments failing to negate the impact of a 27 per cent decline in EMEA and a 40 per cent one in APAC. In stark contrast, Acer, Dell and HP have all seen growth of more than 50 per cent in those regions.

However, it wasn’t all bad news for the premium brands, with Apple seeing itself move from eighth to seventh thanks to increasing shipments of its MacBook lineup. Total shipments where above one million for the first time in a first quarter.

"Historically, notebook volumes decline quarter vs quarter in the first quarter of the year, and Q1 2008 was no exception," said director of notebook market research at DisplaySearch, John Jacob.

"However, not all brands followed this trend during the first quarter of 2008. Dell, perhaps as a result of an a result of an increased focus on retail and Greater China, and Toshiba, avoided this trend.

"Also of particular note were Apple’s seven per cent and Samsung’s 15 per cent quarter-on-quarter growth," he added. "Apple’s entry level notebook starts at more than $1,000, while Samsung, at present, only sells notebooks in APAC, EMEA and Greater China."

Total laptop shipments hit 31.108 million for the quarter.

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