LONDON, September 4, 2014 — The smart connected device (SCD) market continued to grow in 2Q14 with combined shipments of PCs, tablets, and smartphones reaching 52.5 million units, an increase of 2.8% over the same period last year, according to International Data Corporation (IDC). Although SCDs continue to be one of the fastest-growing markets in the IT industry, growth softened with a shift in dynamics between the different client computing devices: demand for tablets declined annually, impacted by longer product life cycles, while portable PCs regained strong attention with an uptake in demand driving renewals. Larger smartphones and price aggressiveness from low-end notebooks attracted consumers and contributed to the shift.
The end of Windows XP support and an ageing PC installed base since the introduction of Windows 7 supported strong renewals of desktops and portable PCs in the enterprise space, while demand also picked up in the consumer segment, leading to a solid 25.2% increase in PC shipments.
Tablets declined 12.5% Y/Y with shipments reaching 7.6 million units in 2Q14, affected by the increasing popularity of phablets and notebook replacements. 2-in-1s, which are included here, performed better, growing 10.7% Y/Y.
Demand for smartphones remained high and in 2Q14 shipments reached 31.7 million units. Despite a decline of 0.4% Y/Y, smartphones were the largest segment by volume, accounting for around 60% of total SCD shipments in the region.
"Shipments in the PC market benefited from an increase in corporate renewals, as companies continued to replace their old machines running Windows XP with new systems. As a result, growth in commercial shipments reached 26.6% in the second quarter of the year. The consumer market also benefited from strong shipments, which saw 23.6% growth, supported by an uptake in demand for new PCs to replace the ageing installed base. Sell-in was also enhanced by attractively priced low-end notebooks running Microsoft 8.1 with Bing, expected to hit the retail shelves in time for the back-to-school season," said Maciek Gornicki, senior research analyst, IDC EMEA Personal Computing.
"The contraction in the tablet market in the region was caused by an increase in tablet life cycles and a dynamic shift between the different devices," said Jorge Ferreira, European tablet research analyst, IDC EMEA Personal Computing. "The growing popularity of phablets has constrained demand for smaller, 7- to 8-inch tablets, whereas larger screen sizes have been impacted by the attractive price points of low-end notebooks. The commercial segment in the region recorded its highest spike ever in 2Q14 and is predicted to continue expanding in the coming years, benefiting from 2-in-1 adoption, thanks to their function similarities with notebooks and a further drop in price points."
Although Samsung and Apple maintained their leadership in the overall device market, supported by large smartphone volumes, the SCD market has become less concentrated as traditional PC vendors gain ground in smartphone and tablet markets:
Apple remains the tablet market leader with 2.1 million units sold in the second quarter, despite the fierce competition. Samsung was second, despite a 19% Y/Y volume decline. Asus retained third position, benefiting from the good performance of its 2-in-1s and low-end product line.
On the PC side, HP and Lenovo continue to dominate the PC market, followed by Acer, Dell, Asus, and Apple. Samsung was ninth in PCs, while Sony slipped out of the top 10 after the sale of the Vaio brand.
Samsung continues to lead the smartphone market, boosted by the increasing popularity of phablets, followed by Apple and Sony, with the top 3 taking more than 60% of the market.
Top 5 Vendors: Western Europe Smart Connected Device Shipments* 2Q14 (Calendar Year) (000 Units)
Unit Shipments 2Q13
Unit Shipments 2Q14
Unit % Share 2Q13
Unit % Share 2Q14
Unit Growth 2Q13 vs 2Q14
Source: IDC EMEA Smart Connected Devices, Final Results, 2Q14, August 11, 2014
Shipments are branded shipments for all form factors (including desktops and notebooks) and exclude x86 servers as well as OEM sales for all vendors. Data for all vendors is reported for calendar periods.
IDC's Quarterly Smart Connected Device Tracker provides unmatched market coverage and forecasts of the entire device space, covering PCs, tablets, and smartphones in more than 80 countries — providing fast, essential, and comprehensive market information across the entire connected device market.
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