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  (Source: bloomberg.com)
Google's Chromebook, however, manages to stay on top of its game

PC shipments have taken a hard hit since the advent of mobile electronics like tablets and smartphones, and while second quarter PC shipments show no different, some are managing to see some good in a bad situation -- like Lenovo, which managed to surpass Hewlett-Packard (HP) as the top PC vendor. 

According to a new Gartner report, worldwide PC shipments dropped 10.9 percent in Q2 2013 to 76 million units from the year-ago quarter. This represents the fifth consecutive quarter of decreased shipments. 

“We are seeing the PC market reduction directly tied to the shrinking installed base of PCs, as inexpensive tablets displace the low-end machines used primarily for consumption in mature and developed markets,” said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner. “In emerging markets, inexpensive tablets have become the first computing device for many people, who at best are deferring the purchase of a PC. This is also accounting for the collapse of the mini notebook market.”

Back in April, it was reported that PC industry sales had dropped nearly 14 percent in Q1 2013. 

However, Lenovo seems to be picking up in PC shipments. Gartner found that Lenovo passed HP as the top worldwide PC vendor for Q2 2013 with 12,677,265 shipments. HP came in second place with 12,402,887 for the quarter. 

But if you look at just U.S. shipments alone, HP is still on top with 3,957,761 Q2 shipments while Lenovo came in fourth place with 1,515,562 quarterly shipments. Dell came in second while Apple came in third. 

Despite the 10.9 percent decrease in PC shipments, there's one machine that seems to disregard the dwindling conditions of the PC market -- Google's Chromebook

According to NPD Group Inc., the Chromebook has gained 20 to 25 percent of the U.S. market for laptops under $300 in just the past eight months. The PC seems to be snagging market share and sales while the rest of the market is slumping. 

Chromebooks were introduced in June 2011 and treated like a stripped-down machine with limited abilities. They run the Google Chrome OS and use Web-based applications rather than traditional desktop applications that stay on the machine. 

There are a few different models made by Samsung, Acer, HP and Google (Chromebook Pixel). They start at $199 USD. 

Sources: Gartner, IDC, Bloomberg



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RE: Docks docks docks
By Samus on 7/11/2013 1:59:49 PM , Rating: 3
reduced size/weight = reduced packing/shipping costs

thats a big deal for products manufactured 12,000 miles away


RE: Docks docks docks
By mjv.theory on 7/11/2013 3:20:19 PM , Rating: 2
Just got a very well made 9.7" Android tablet, with quad core A9's (RK3188 on GF 28nm - think Tegra 3.5ish) for £113 delivered ($170), so that includes air mail costs from China. I've played around with ipad4 and note10.1 and this thing is not far off is terms of build quality and performance. Also, after 7 days in transit it arrived 100% charged, so the battery is fairly decent too. Screen is the only compromise, but it's quite acceptable from most angles and very receptive. You can get a retina ips screen (2046x1536) with a quad A7 for another $20, or an exynos 5250 (a la nexus 10) with a retina screen for under $250, if your tablet buying budget stretches to that.

Obviously, I ordering direct from China, so if it goes wrong it's a serious pain/risk to return. Anyhow the point I'm trying to make is that the true cost of tablet manufacture is less than you may think and North America and Europe is only 10% of the world's population....and market, although a more significant chunk of the market profit. I also noticed that some 32Gb tablets are only $10-15 more than the 16Gb versions, not the extra $100 that Apple (and perhaps others) hopes the affluent ignorant will pay for $10 worth of extra onboard NAND.

I've also just built a mini budget PC (custom build in a 6x8x10 wooden box) and that cost around £230 (plus screen). So if you don't want to play Crysis and you don't demand a large screen, a quite decent tablet is half the price and a lot more convenient for most of the world's population.

It's more to do with economics and requirements than physics.


RE: Docks docks docks
By karimtemple on 7/11/2013 3:27:36 PM , Rating: 2
I've been looking at these Chinese devices lately. I very worried about support so my hand has been stayed, but not lightly, as a 1080p phone with Snapdragon 600 for $250 is obscenely tempting. I really wish Google would hurry the hell up and make a Nexus 5 so I don't make any rash decisions.


RE: Docks docks docks
By freedom4556 on 7/11/2013 6:31:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
... and North America and Europe is only 10% of the world's population....and market ...
That's not true because they aren't the same thing. I'm sure they are selling lots of tablets in Namibia. Especially with technology like tablets, the market is where the money is.


RE: Docks docks docks
By mjv.theory on 7/11/2013 7:30:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
the ....market is where the money is

Perhaps so, and I attempted to allude to this by mentioning the "market for profits". However, recent news articles have highlighted the growth of "no-name" Chinese brands that point to gaining at least 40% of the world market, by volume or turnover?, I don't know. Regardless, as with PCs, the "brand" name becomes less important as the technology becomes ubiquitous, and subsequently, the capabilities and price move toward the volume market.

Apple's, and Intel's, success with profit margins, are disproportionate to the level of "innovation". Apple in particular have succeeded by a combination of supply chain "management" and marketing. Their strengths have been around integration and optimisation and early to market, rather than any real technological innovation as such. Intel's success too is grounded on marketing and market management (i.e. use your position to control competition).

The huge growth of mobile devices based on similar tech and straightforward integration of components, renders the computing market, at best uncertain, and more importantly, on a continuing trend toward the cheapest "good enough" computing solution. Such an outcome may not sit well readers of this site/forums, but is nevertheless inevitable.


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