Analysts claim the world’s PC market was impacted by stiff competition from the consumer electronics industry as well as the upcoming Vista launch in the fourth quarter of 2006.
While HP, for the second quarter running, was the world’s number one PC vendor based on PC unit shipments, it tied with Dell for full-year 2006 PC unit shipments.
Both HP and Dell had PC shipment market share totals of 15.9pc. Toshiba moved into the worldwide top five table, surpassing Fujitsu Siemens.
According to research firm Gartner, worldwide PC unit shipments in Q4 grew 7.4pc over last year with some 67.3m PCs shipped during the quarter.
In Q4 HP’s PC shipments increased 23.9pc as its global market share totalled 17.4pc.
Dell remained in the number two position, but shipments decreased 8.7pc resulting in its market share total of 13.9pc.
Gartner analysts said the overall PC market was impacted by stiff competition from the consumer electronics industry and the upcoming Vista launch.
“PC price erosion was a defining feature of the quarter,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst for Gartner Dataquest’s Client Computing Markets Group.
“In the consumer market, the PC industry battled for wallet share against other consumer electronics products, such as games consoles and flat panel TVs, while at the same time cutting prices to ensure market demand did not stall prior to Microsoft’s Vista consumer launch in January,” Kitagawa said.
Worldwide PC shipments totalled 239 million in 2006, a 9.5pc increase on 2005.
The Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region continued to be the largest PC region during 2006 with shipments totalling80.3m units in 2006, up 10.8pc on 2005. Consumers in Europe continued to purchase PCs at entry level price points.
By John Kennedy