Tech market snapshot: Workstations and Windows 10 PCs up; notebooks and personal storage down

We roundup the latest news from IT and tech analysts to see which tech categories have been doing well, which haven’t, and what’s forecast to be big next year.

Jon Peddle Research (JPR) has reported that workstation market volume grew by 2.0 per cent and 2.1 per cent in Q3 (YoY and sequentially).

Total units climbed to around 1.04 million, and revenue was up a comparable amount, as ASPs were generally flat overall.

“While the mainstream PC market has been contracting – due primarily to longer replacement cycles and competition from alternative computing platforms – JPR sees the workstation market staying on a growth path for the long-term, a narrative supported by Q3’s positive, albeit modest, results,” said the firm.

The adoption rate of PCs pre-installed with Microsoft’s new Windows 10 operating system continued to increase as the fourth quarter of 2015 progressed, according to data published by Context.

The first two weeks of November 2015 saw more than 346,000 new Windows 10-based PCs go through the Western European distribution channel, a number that translated into a 67 per cent share of the Windows Home and a 25 per cent share of the Windows Business segment (including the Windows 7/Windows 10 downgrade version).

Shares were up considerably from October, when Windows 10 accounted for 43 per cent of Windows Home and 17 per cent of Windows Business sales.

Annual shipments of notebooks are expected to decline significantly this year despite vendors’ best efforts during the year’s second half. According to global market research firm TrendForce, total notebook shipments for 2015 will reach around 164.4 million units, down 6.4 per cent year-on-year.

“This year has been an extraordinary tough for the notebook market,” said TrendForce notebook analyst Anita Wang. “However shipments will recover in 2016, when more branded vendors will be entering the market, including Xiaomi and Huawei. Consumers have delayed buying notebooks due to the free upgrade of Windows 10 this year, but this slump in purchases will dissipate by next year; and new products released by new market entrants will spur the market.

“We estimate that total notebook shipments for 2016 will increase a little by one per cent year-on-year to 165 million units.”

IDC has revealed that worldwide personal and entry-level storage (PELS) shipments declined 13.4 per cent year-over-year to 16.7 million units in the third quarter of 2015, but were up 10.3 per cent compared to the previous quarter.

"The personal and entry-level storage market was stagnant in 2014 and started to show signs of decline in 2015," said Jingwen Li, senior research analyst, Storage Systems, IDC.

"The adoption of cloud storage has been gaining traction in the consumer space with its easy data access and mobile device integration. One of the negative impacts of cloud storage deployment leads to shrinking demand within the PELS market."

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