Some staggering numbers from market research firm Canalys on Wednesday. There were 134 million PCs shipped in the fourth quarter of 2012, with one-third of them being tablets.
Canalys counts tablets as PCs — doing that changes the landscape of the entire PC industry. According to the report, Apple is in the lead, shipping 27.0 million units, taking its share over 20% for the first time.
HP came in second, shipping 15 million units, slightly ahead of Lenovo as both vendors captured 11% share of the market. Thanks to its tablet shipments, Samsung made it into the top 5 shipping 11.7 million PCs, leaving it with 9% share.
The Windows 8 launch “had little effect on worldwide shipments,” according to the report.
What did have an effect on shipments is tablets, which “grew 75% to 46.2 million units, with full-year shipments totaling 114.6 million units.”
The outlook for Dell was not surprisingly poor:
Dell’s reputation in the PC market continues to fade. It only shipped 9.7 million units, a 19% decline on 2011. Its direct business model is expensive and unsuitable for driving growth in new markets. A turnaround in fortunes is likely to take years.
The biggest problem Apple had was supply:
Apple’s growth in the pad segment was driven by strong demand for the iPad mini. Its overall shipments, however, were hampered by supply issues. Canalys estimates that the mini made up over half of Apple’s total pad shipments, with its attractive price point and compact design leading to significant cannibalization in the iPad range and wider PC market. Despite record shipments, Q4 saw Apple’s pad share dip to 49%, becoming the first quarter it has not controlled over half the market. ‘Apple timed the launch of the iPad mini well,’ said Pin-Chen Tang, Canalys Research Analyst. ‘Its success proves there is a clear demand for pads with smaller screens at a more affordable price. Without the launch, Apple would surely have lost more ground to its competitors.’
Amazon grew 18%, shipping 4.6 million units.