Home > Brands > Apple > Global Notebook Drop Predicted, Year-On Growth Expected

Worldwide notebook shipments are predicted to drop sequentially in the fourth quarter of 2019 following an increase from the previous quarter according to new research.

Digitimes Research has forecasted a 1.8% sequential drop in Q4 shipments for notebooks, following the 2% rise in Q3, due in part to US-imposed tariffs on China-imported notebooks.

It comes after Gartner saw worldwide PC shipments increased by 1.1% in the third quarter, with unit numbers totalling 68 million by 30 September, which ChannelNews covered in October.

Canalys also echoed these results, revealing PC shipment growth reach 4.7%, totalling 70.9 million units sold for Q3.

It should be noted however that these results also include numbers for workstation shipments, and Chromebooks as a subset of Notebook shipments.

Beginning mid-December, new US tariffs have forced most notebook brands to pre-stock extra inventory in Q3, with strong enterprise demand and Huawei production boosting sales in the quarter.

Most brands are still reporting high levels of inventory and coupled with the Intel CPU shortage, Digitimes is predicted a sequential dip in Q4 global notebook shipment.

Despite a drop in shipments, year-on growth is still expected to register for notebooks according to research numbers.

At the time of the Canalys report, Rushabh Doshi, Research Director of Canalys’ Mobility services, raised concerns regarding production schedules, as vendors look to circumvent global economic issues, such as the US-China trade war or the Intel CPU shortage.

‘Intel remains a key bottleneck,’ said Mr Doshi, suggesting that ‘leading vendors will have an opportunity to consolidate the market and squeeze smaller vendors’.

However, Gartner analyst, Mikako Kitagawa, said neither the trade war or the Intel ship shortage played a significant role in the Q3 shipments.

‘The Intel CPU shortage has continued to ease, and U.S. tariffs on China-built mobile PCs had a minimal impact,’ said Ms Kitagawa.

In terms of brand performance, Apple’s new 16-inch Macbook Pro is expected to begin volume shipments in Q4, while the third-generation Surface Laptop will boost shipments for Microsoft.

Dell, on the other hand, will see a Q4 drop in shipments due to the company’s less competitive strategy of inexpensive consumer models, regardless of its stable enterprise sales.

Lenovo, who is currently in second place in terms of overall global shipments, will see a slight pick up in Q4 thanks seasonal promotions from Chinese e-commerce platforms.

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