Mobile device popularity leads to lower PC sales

Tuesday 15 January 2013

The growing popularity of mobile working devices contributed to falling PC sales in the final quarter of 2012, it has been suggested.

According to IT analyst Gartner, shipments totalled 90.3 million units between October and December 2012, down 4.9 per cent on the equivalent quarter 12 months earlier.

Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at the firm, claimed that tablets have dramatically changed the device landscape for PCs, not so much by cannibalising PC sales, but by causing PC users to shift consumption to tablets rather than replacing older computers.

"Whereas as once we imagined a world in which individual users would have both a PC and a tablet as personal devices, we increasingly suspect that most individuals will shift consumption activity to a personal tablet, and perform creative and administrative tasks on a shared PC," she stated.

"There will be some individuals who retain both, but we believe they will be the exception and not the norm."

Ms Kitagawa predicted that buyers will not replace secondary PCs in the household, instead allowing them to age out and shift consumption to a tablet.

"This transformation was triggered by the availability of compelling low-cost tablets in 2012, and will continue until the installed base of PCs declines to accommodate tablets as the primary consumption device," she added.

According to a study conducted by Flurry, there were more tablet activations than smartphones on Christmas Day 2012 - reversing the normal trend.

Posted by Alex Boardman