Research firm IDC put out its latest quarterly report on the state of the PC market earlier this week, and as our chart here shows, HP is the worldwide leader in terms of market share.
The California-based company retook the number one spot for the first time since 2013, according to IDC, pulling ahead of second-place Lenovo. Third-place Dell grew decently over the past year. Same goes for fourth-place Apple, which recently said its Mac business is now worth $US25 billion, a testament to its exclusively high-end lineup. Acer is now fifth.
The most important figure, however, remains that big one in the middle. According to IDC, the 60+ million shipments in 2016 represented the PC market’s first year-over-year growth in five years. It was only up 0.6%, but it could mean the market is finally starting to stabilise after years of smartphones and tablets eating at its ankles.
That said, as The Verge recently noted, some of that growth appears to be a result of the IDC including Google’s Chromebooks as part of its totals. A separate report from Gartner, which does not count Chromebooks as PCs, found that the market declined 2.4% year-over-year.
Wherever the truth lies, it’s not the best news for Microsoft. Google could be stepping in where Windows machines are falling, or the market as a whole could still be on the slide. All of this is worth keeping in mind on May 2, when Microsoft is widely expected to introduce a lighter version of Windows that will directly compete with Chrome OS.