Consumers buy new computers after OS support ends but sales drop 1.1% overall

EMEA Q1 PC sales ‘stabilise’ thanks to XP

PC shipments in EMEA reached 21.8 million units in Q1 2014 – a decline of 1.1 per cent year-on-year – according to IDC.

The EMEA market ‘stabilised’ as Western Europe returned to growth at 8.6 per cent, supported by an upturn in business demand across the region, which drove a 15.1 per cent increase in the commercial space. The consumer segment showed growth of 2.1 per cent.

Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) remained partially impacted by high inventory and currency fluctuations and declined by 16.7 per cent, while MEA saw an 8.4 per cent drop in shipments as parts of the region continued to suffer from political unrest.

"Total EMEA shipments have now been declining for seven consecutive quarters, but the pace of contraction slowed considerably this quarter; despite areas of improvement, the market has not yet fully recovered," said IDC in a statement.

"Desktop PC shipments increased by 1.4 per cent, while portable PCs continued to contract by 2.6 per cent."

However, worldwide computer sales were better than expected with shipments reaching 73.4 million units in Q1, a dip of 4.4 per cent year-on-year, beating a projected decline of 5.3 per cent, due in part to users buying new machines to upgrade Windows XP.

Microsoft halted Windows XP support earlier this month.

"The PC market in EMEA returned to more stable levels and performed above expectations, with shipments supported by healthy demand in the commercial space, where end of Windows XP support and improving macro-economic outlook led to stronger than anticipated sell-in across a number of countries," said IDC in a statement.

"The consumer market started to stabilise, showing signs of improvement; however shipments remained within negative trends. Performance in some mature markets appears to have been more positive than expected, with growth enhanced particularly by corporate renewals, while the business environment in the emerging economies proved difficult, with shipments affected by currency fluctuations and high inventory in certain countries."

Worldwide PC shipments have now declined for eight consecutive quarters ‘as a result of shifting technology usage and competition (notably with tablets & smartphones) as well as economic pressures’

The US market continued to stabilise with 14.3 million PC shipments in Q1.

Here’s a rundown of how the top PC vendors performed during the period:

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