The embattled PC market will return to growth in 2024, led by spiking commercial Mac sales, IDC has predicted.
Global PC shipments are set to tumble 13.7% in 2023 amid the “greatest annual decline in consumer PC shipments since the category’s inception”, IDC said.
Signs of growth are finally returning, the analyst said, however, as it forecast that PC shipments will rebound in 2024 to record 3.7% growth.
Although Apple’s growth run has moderated this year, IDC predicted macOS commercial shipments will hike by nearly 20% in 2024 (see below). Commercial Windows and Chrome OS shipments will remain fairly flat, meanwhile.
While consumer demand remains “tepid”, the commercial PC market is “getting very interesting” for a number of reasons, IDC said.
When it comes to processors, the commercial PC market is undergoing an historic shift as AMD and Apple continue to take share (11% and 5% in 2022, respectively), IDC said, adding that AI-capable PCs, while not ready today, “are coming”. This has shifted some of the discussion around device purchasing within businesses, it added.
“Commercial PCs will remain interesting for years to come with technology advances adding an extra element to decision making, but it’s important to remember that Windows 10 end of support comes in 2025 and this will drive commercial refresh regardless of whether companies are waiting on more advanced PCs or just needing to update an ageing installed base,” said IDC Group Vice President Ryan Reith (pictured, top)
“It seems clear that Apple sees an opportunity to continue its growth in the commercial segment and this will be an angle to watch closely going forward.”
IDC was among the more pessimistic of the analysts following the release of Q2 PC data last month. The PC market registered its sixth consecutive quarter of contraction during the quarter, with shipments down 13.4% year on year, according to the market watcher.
IDC expects global PC shipments to grow 3.7% to reach 261.4m shipments in 2024. This is higher than the 259.6m in 2018, but still below 2019 levels, it emphasised.