Tumultuous times are ahead for the PC and tablet market, according to a new forecast from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker. Worldwide shipments of traditional PCs are expected to fall 12.8% in 2022 to 305.3 million units, while tablet shipments are expected to fall 6.8% to 156.8 million. The African market will see an even bigger decline.
Inflation, a weakening global economy and the increase in purchases over the past two years are the main causes of the deteriorated outlook.
Further contraction is also expected in 2023 as consumer demand has slowed, education demand has been largely met and business demand is being squeezed out due to deteriorating macroeconomic conditions. The combined PC and tablet market is expected to decline by 2.6% in 2023 and grow again in 2024.
“While demand is slowing, the outlook for shipments remains above pre-pandemic levels,” said Jitesh Ubrani, research manager for IDC Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers. “Long-term demand will be driven by a slow economic recovery coupled with an enterprise hardware refresh as Windows 10 support comes to an end. Educational implementations and hybrid work are also expected to become a mainstay for additional volumes.”
Linn Huang, IDC Research Vice President for Devices and Displays, said: “As the economic headwinds gain momentum, we expect deteriorating consumer confidence to lead to further contraction in the consumer market over the next six quarters,” added: recovery in time for the next major refresh cycle could drive some growth in the final years of our forecast. While volumes will not reach pandemic peaks, we expect the consumer market to move into more premium segments of the market.”
IDC research analyst Grace Munyi says that in Africa, currency depreciations in key markets such as Egypt and South Africa are making PCDs even more expensive for end users, while markets in Nigeria and Kenya are hampered by dollar shortages.