PC sales see biggest drop this year as nation opts for tasty tablets

A Dell all-in-one PC
The UK's had enough

The UK PC market's outlook went from bad to worse during the third quarter after sales in the region plummeted 21.2% year-on-year. PC shipments to businesses slid 8.3%, while the consumer PC market's decline was sharper at 17.1%.

HP took home the top vendor award for the month with 18.5% market share, and that's not counting sales of its impressive Chromebook 11 (Gartner only includes desktop-based PCs and x86 Windows 8 tablets in its figures).

It was followed by Dell, which snared 11.8% of the market. Acer, the CEO of which recently stepped down after disappointing financial results for the quarter, captured the third-highest market share with 9.3%. With 7.9% market share, Apple is now officially the UK's fourth biggest PC vendor, ahead of Lenovo (7.7%).

The UK PC market had a significantly worse time than France and Germany, which saw its PC markets decline 10.4% and 14.4% respectively.

Long decline

The decline was felt across Western Europe, where shipments fell 12.8% compared with 12 months ago. HP once again led the pack with 18.5% market share, followed by Dell (11.8%), Acer (9.3%), Apple (7.9%) and Lenovo (7.7%).

Gartner analyst Meike Escherich said that the Western Europe PC market's performance declined "faster than expected" during the quarter as consumers opted for tablets.

She said: "The transition from PCs to tablets continued to reduce PC sales. In addition, product transitions to 'Haswell' and 'Bay Trail' processors, and preparations for the launch of Windows 8.1 and associated new products, meant that vendors were careful about managing inventory and focused on clearing out stock in the distribution channel."

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Kane Fulton
Kane has been fascinated by the endless possibilities of computers since first getting his hands on an Amiga 500+ back in 1991. These days he mostly lives in realm of VR, where he's working his way into the world Paddleball rankings in Rec Room.