According to new data from market research firm Counterpoint Research, global PC shipments declined just 0.2% YoY in Q4’23. This marks the first quarterly shipment decline below 1% after eight consecutive quarters of larger declines, suggesting the contraction cycle in the PC market may be nearing an end.
PC manufacturers and suppliers expect improved shipment momentum in the first half of 2024. However, 2023 full-year shipments were still down 14% compared to 2022 due to ongoing slowdowns in commercial and consumer demand.
Major PC brands like Lenovo, HP, Dell, and Apple held their market share positions in 2023. Lenovo and HP saw small single-digit shipment growth in Q4, aided by restocking in North America, while Dell and Apple shipments declined due to weaker commercial and consumer demand.
Industry observers see artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities as a key driver of PC refresh cycles in 2024. Leading processor vendors like Intel and AMD plan to release updated chips optimized for AI applications. Multiple PC manufacturers also showcased new AI-focused laptops at the recent CES 2024.
Replacement demand from businesses and growing interest in AI PCs is expected to help return the industry to positive shipment growth of around 5% for full-year 2024, according to analysts. However, major replacement trends may materialize in the second half of the year.