Five years of declining PC sales

For the year, Gartner estimated shipments at 269.717 million, down 6.2 per cent year-on-year, with each of the major manufacturers except Dell reporting falling sales.

Gartner says high-end PCs are doing well, but of course, are a smaller market:

There have been innovative form factors, like 2-in-1s and thin and light notebooks, as well as technology improvements, such as longer battery life. This high end of the market has grown fast, led by engaged PC users who put high priority on PCs. However, the market driven by PC enthusiasts is not big enough to drive overall market growth.

There may less volume, but it’d be nice to know how that effects profits in the notoriously slim margin PC business.

Meanwhile, on overall, global IT spend:

Companies are due to splash $3.5tr (£2.87tr) on IT this year, globally, although that is down from its previous projection of three per cent.

See some more commentary of that forecast.


Microsoft estimates it has 14% device share

At it partner conference, Microsoft’s Kevin Turner portrays the company as having 14% device (PC, smartphone, tablets) share:

In a world of 14 per cent device share, we have a new mindset: you have to have a challenger mindset. Everyone has to have a challenger mindset.

Pretty astonishing if that’s the case, or near it. El Reg covered that a 14% number, from Gartner, earlier as well with more breakout.

Meanwhile, some momentum elsewhere:

Turner claimed 785 customers had been “rescued” from Google in the last 18 months, that Microsoft is “eating VMware’s lunch” with Hyper-V, that Windows Azure added 42,000 customers during the last year and that SharePoint is a $2bn-a-year business.

Some additional quotes from that talk here too, going over VMware account wins.

Microsoft estimates it has 14% device share

SysTrack 7.0 continues Lakeside’s ‘big-data’ push in end-user management

My report on Lakeside Software’s new release is up. SysTrack is one of the veteran tools used in the end-user device management space and, if it can start adding in more mobile and tablet functionality, is well setup to profit from the churn in that area helping companies asses and then plan for how to migrate those fleets of aging PCs to new platforms.

Here’s the 451 take:

While end-user device management has been one of the sleepier areas of IT in recent years, the shift to mobile and the rise of non-Microsoft end-user devices looks to be creating enough churn in this space to make it more interesting. Companies are considering new ways to deliver end-user devices – desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones – and the choices are not as simple as they used to be (namely, Microsoft Windows running on a PC). Lakeside has a 17-year history in end-user device asset scanning and the analytics around end-user device planning. The company’s SysTrack product should find several opportunities in this churning, end-user device environment. While Microsoft Windows still dominates end-user market share, the winds seem to be blowing toward a more fragmented market, which will require Lakeside to diversify beyond its core Windows domain expertise.

Clients can read the full report, or apply for a trial to check it out.

SysTrack 7.0 continues Lakeside’s ‘big-data’ push in end-user management

Google Chromebooks at work in the fragmented PC era (451 Report)

We teamed up with Spiceworks recently to write a report checking in on Google Chromebooks, mostly around their market-share and usage. It was a nice experiment to see how our two pool of data and analysis could be meshed together to investigate how IT is operating in the wild.

Spiceworks looked at 71,159 companies worldwide to see what OSes were on their desktops, which gave us some good input on Chromebook usage. Our own ChangeWave surveys have been tracking consumer and corporate buying intentions around Chromebooks (and other end-user device, “PC”, OS selection as well) for sometime, giving us a good mix of data to figure out how Chromebooks are doing.

Here’s the 451 Take:

When we look at the available data and the value proposition for Chromebooks, it doesn’t seem half bad, and, perhaps, not as far-fetched as a browser-only PC seemed when Google announced Chromebooks in 2011. As on-premises applications continue their slow migration to the cloud, and users continue to glom onto non-Windows platforms like iOS and Android, the end-user device landscape is increasingly fragmenting. Although Chromebooks’ market share is likely less than 5% (if not 3%), the broad, big-name-filled Chromebook ecosystem is nothing to sneeze at, and end users are more open than ever to new PC paradigms. Additionally, there’s an intriguing intersection of interest between Chromebooks and desktop as a service when it comes to supporting corporate Windows applications on new PC platforms. We’ll continue watching Chromebooks carefully, as well as the other end-user device platforms that are finding purchase in the fragmented PC era we’re hurtling toward.

Unlike most reports I post here, this one is free for non-clients, so you can read the full report if you’re one of the unlucky ones who’s not a regular 451 readers.

Google Chromebooks at work in the fragmented PC era (451 Report)

“22% of shipments”

According to tech market beanie Canalys, Microsoft operating systems ran 93 per cent of traditional PC clients in 2013, but the share fell to 58 per cent when tabs were rolled into shipments.

Worse still, if you factor in all intelligent devices – notebook, slabbies and smartphones – the software firm accounts for just 22 per cent of shipments last year, down from the low 30s in ‘12.

Just the mobile device space and Microsoft accounted for only three per cent of the operating systems installed.

“22% of shipments”