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Did Apple's sales grow or shrink? Gartner and IDC differ on PC industry estimates

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Market research firms Gartner and IDC are releasing PC shipment estimates, but aside from data on

idc q2 2012 pc shipments
idc q2 2012 pc shipments

Once again, market research firms Gartner and IDC (above) are releasing their newest PC shipment estimates, although this quarter the disparities between the two are particularly large. Both firms agree that HP shipped the most PCs again this quarter, both in the US and worldwide, and that its global shipments declined by about 12 percent year over year to around 13 million. They also agree that Asus shipped somewhere around 39 percent more computers worldwide compared to the same time last year. But the correspondence falls apart for Lenovo — IDC thinks its shipments grew 25.2, while Gartner cites a much lower figure of 14.9 percent. Furthermore, IDC says "only Lenovo" managed to grow shipments in the US, quoting 6.1 percent growth year over year. IDC's estimate of 1.28 million shipments also puts Lenovo comfortably in fourth place overall in the US, although it surprisingly doesn’t even place in Gartner’s top five.

However, according to Gartner, it wasn’t Lenovo that grew its US shipments while everyone else’s shrank — that honor should belong to Apple, with 4.3 percent growth to 1.9 million shipments. The firm also estimates that everyone else’s dropped by roughly 10 (Dell) to 20 (Toshiba) percent. In comparison, IDC thinks Apple’s number likely shrank by 1.1 percent. Despite the disagreements, the two do see eye to eye on one salient point: overall, worldwide growth in the traditional PC industry is nonexistent.