" ITREALMS: PC market declines in Middle East, Africa by 25.9%

Monday, June 06, 2016

PC market declines in Middle East, Africa by 25.9%

The Middle East and Africa (MEA) PC market has witnessed a 25.9 per cent year-on-year decline in shipments in the first quarter 2016, reports ITRealms.

Acclaimed global technology research and consulting firm, the International Data Corporation (IDC) made this revelation at the weekend, saying that shipments to the region fell for the fourth consecutive quarter, to total 3.2 million units.

Notebooks, IDC said, recorded a sharp 28.7 per cent decline in shipments to total 1.9 million units, while desktop shipments registered a comparatively slower decline, falling by 21.4 per cent year-on-year to total 1.3 million units.

The Senior Research Manager for Personal Computing, Systems, and Infrastructure Solutions, IDC Middle East, Africa, and Turkey at IDC, Fouad Charakla, said all the largest markets in the region declined in the first quarter Q1 of 2016.

“The reasons differ from country to country, but slowdowns in tourist spending, lower consumer confidence resulting from low oil prices, political and economic instability, currency devaluations, and military conflicts have all played a part in the regional contraction. The ongoing shift in end-user spending toward smartphones and, to a lesser extent, tablets in the consumer segment was also a key element in the market’s decline,” Charakla said.

Akin to previous quarters, Charakla pointed out that the positions of the top three vendors remained unchanged in Q1 2016, despite experiencing a year-on-year decline of 23.4 per cent in shipments.

“HP remained the market leader, securing the highest market share ever attained by a PC vendor in the region over the past 10 years. Second-placed Lenovo registered a slightly deeper year-on-year decline of 25.2 per cent, while third-placed Dell suffered the sharpest decline of all vendors, recording a 28.9 per cent fall in shipments,” the manager said.

In the intervening time, fourth-ranked Acer was the only vendor to experience growth in the region, with a 2.2 per cent year-on-year increase in shipments. However, the gap in terms of the market share of the top four vendors remains significant with Asus in fifth place, although Asus suffered a year-on-year decline of 7.3per cent in shipments during the first quarter of the year.

“With the approach of the holy month of Ramadan combined with the usual summer slowdown in activity, the second quarter of 2016 is also expected to record a decline in shipments, albeit a much softer one,” continues Charakla. “In the longer term, the PC market is expected to recover to some extent in 2017, with modest growth anticipated in the following years. Shipments to Africa are expected to grow slightly faster than shipments to the Middle East. Some substantial desktop orders were secured by local brands in Egypt and Algeria during Q1 2016, and there were also a number of large education sector deliveries that took place in smaller African markets during the quarter, such as in Rwanda, Burkina Faso, and Ivory Coast.”

IDC further noted that there will continue to be a gradual shift in the pattern of demand from consumers to commercial customers, as a growing proportion of home users switch from PCs to tablets and smartphones, while commercial end users retain a stronger loyalty to PCs. The only exception to this trend will be the education sector, where commercial users will transition from PCs to tablets at a much faster rate. Despite this anomaly, commercial demand for PCs in the region is expected to surpass that of home users by 2018.

Chuks Egbuna/GEE 
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