Lenovo holds off HP to become number 1 PC manufacturer

Lenovo is now the number one PC manufacturer in the world ahead of HP, as the two continue their neck-and-neck battle.

Analyst firm Gartner said Lenovo was back in the top position by shipments in this year's second quarter by only a small difference in share.

But Lenovo showed mixed regional results, as it experienced strong growth in the Americas and EMEA, while showing a major decline in Asia/Pacific. Weakness in China was most likely the contributor of Lenovo’s shipment decline in the region, as the majority of Lenovo’s volume came from China, said the analyst.

While HP was slightly behind Lenovo overall, HP is a market leader in key regions including the US, EMEA and Latin America. Asia/Pacific has been a weakness in the last three years for HP, "but preliminary second quarter results suggest an improvement of their performance in the region", Gartner said.

Overall, said Gartner, total worldwide PC shipments have again slumped, showing a 10.9 per cent decrease from the same period last year.

This marks the fifth consecutive quarter of declining shipments in Gartner's figures, which is the longest duration of decline in the PC market’s history, fuelled by the rise of smartphones and tablets.

Gartner said all regions showed a decline compared to a year ago. The fall in the Asia/Pacific PC market continued, showing five consecutive quarters of shipment decline, while the EMEA PC market registered two consecutive quarters of double-digit decline.

“We are seeing the PC market reduction directly tied to the shrinking installed base of PCs, as inexpensive tablets displace the low-end machines used in mature and developed markets,” said Mikako Kitagawa, an analyst at Gartner.

He said, “In emerging markets, inexpensive tablets have become the first computing device for many people, who at best are deferring the purchase of a PC.

Rival analyst firm IDC also said PC total shipments had dropped 11.4 per cent in the second quarter.

The top five PC makers in the second quarter by shipments (Gartner):

Lenovo - 16.7 per cent

HP - 16.3 per cent

Dell - 11.8 per cent

Acer - 8.3 per cent

Asus - 6 per cent