Shipments of desktop PCs fell below 100 million in 2017, new figures have revealed.
According to IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker, global shipments of traditional PCs (desktop, notebooks and workstations) and tablets (slate and detachable) declined 2.7 per cent year-on-year in 2017.
For the entire 'traditional PCs' category, it is expected that there will be decline of 0.9 per cent over the 2017-2022 period, with volumes dropping from 259.4 million in 2017 to 248.3 million in 2022.
In the short term, 2018 is set for a year-on-year decline of 3.2 per cent with demand for slate tablets and legacy PC form factors remaining weak.
It's not all doom and gloom however. When you include detachable tablets such as the Microsoft Surface Pro, you can expect to see 'modest signs of growth' within the five year period of 0.1 per cent.
Commercial device replacements are largely expected to be positive, though momentum will slow after 2020 as mature markets largely end their transition to Windows 10. In emerging markets, commercial activity is expected to carry on for longer, aiding in the market's growth of 0.7 per cent between 2017 and 2022. After ending 2017 with modest growth, detachable tablets are also expected to improve in 2018 and 2019 due to ongoing commercial adoption.
"As the broader PCD market continues to evolve, challenges remain but there are plenty of positive signs, too," said Tom Mainelli, program vice president with IDC's Devices and AR/VR programmes. "New form factors such as convertibles and detachables continue to show long-term growth opportunities in both consumer and commercial markets. Chromebooks remain a bright spot with an increasing number of consumers embracing the platform. And the gaming category continues to grow, driving both positive volumes and ASP trends."
"As expected the PCD market ended 2017 with a contraction," said Jay Chou, research manager with IDC's Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker. "But behind this number is a silver lining that shows the notebook segment posting its most positive growth since 2012, a point bolstered by the continued consumer migration to premium and ultraslim form factors."