Why are PC sales crashing around the world

Computer sales have fallen sharply around the world. After an explosion in demand during the health crisis, the computer market is looking gray. Several factors, including inflation and chip shortages, explain the collapse in sales. We are evaluating.

The computer market is shrinking. According to analysts at the US consulting and research firm Gartner, PC sales will do just that decreased 9.5% during 2022.

“Consumer demand for PCs is expected to decline by 13.1% in 2022 and will decline at a much faster rate than demand for enterprise PCs, which is expected to decline 7.2% year-on-year.”says Ranjit Atwal, principal analyst at Gartner.

In the EMEA region, an economic region that includes the countries of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, the decline appears to be more pronounced. Gartner experts rely on 14% decrease In 2022. These markets are mainly affected by the sharp decline in demand from the general public.

As a reminder, the computer market witnessed unexpected boom over the past two years. During the Covid-19 lockdowns, the demand for computers has skyrocketed. This sudden madness was mainly associated with the popularization of remote work. Many individuals had to work from home, choosing to outfit themselves with a stationary computer.

At the same time, companies have invested heavily in laptops for their employees, who now have to move between the office and their home. The situation is similar in education. Faced with the rise of distance learning, students have purchased a new computer.

During 2020, the laptop market also recorded an 11% increase in sales. Last year, sales were up 15% compared to 2020. This is partly why sales contracted sharply in 2022. Most users Already equipped with a new machine She does not plan to return to leave anytime soon.

Read also: The first laptop with RISC V processor just announced (and you better not buy it)

inflation explosion

Other factors contribute to the decline in PC sales in the global market. In fact, Gartner cites a handful of external factors in its report.

A storm of geopolitical turmoil, high inflation, currency fluctuations, and supply chain disruptions have reduced business and consumer demand for hardware worldwide and is expected to have a significant impact on the PC market in 2022. Ranjit Atwal says.

The report points an accusing finger inflation. During the coronavirus crisis, central banks and governments have invested huge sums in the economy. For months, these measures kept the economy, and especially the US economy, on life support. Once the health crisis ended, ambitious recovery plans were put in place, which contributed to the deterioration of the situation.

Since the end of last year, inflation has started to rise again. The situation accelerated in 2022 with the outbreak of war in Ukraine. According to Eurostat, the European statistical institute, Prices increased 8.6% year-on-year in Europe. In many European countries, including Belgium, inflation has reached the 10% threshold. In France, the inflation rate was 5.8% in one year. Faced with the explosion in the cost of everyday living, most consumers are putting off the most important expenses, such as buying a new personal computer.

computer chips shortage

Gartner also discusses industrial production issues. The popularization of remote work, back-to-back confinement, and the trade war between China and the United States caused a revolution Semiconductor shortage. Deprived of sufficient computer chips, production lines, already weakened by health restrictions, are unable to meet the manufacturers’ demand. And here again, the situation was aggravated by the Ukrainian conflict. In Ukraine, there are already producers of neon gas, which is an essential material for powering lasers that engrave computer chips.

In addition, production lines were delayed after the new containment measures passed in China. By order of the Chinese government, many factories were forced to close for a while. This is especially the case in Shenzhen or Shanghai.

The PC market is not the only one suffering this year. smart phone sales It is also expected to decline in 2022. According to estimates by the International Data Corporation (IDC), phone shipments will decline by 3.5% in 2022. It is believed that only 1.31 billion smartphones were sold in the world this year. In this context, the market leader Samsung finds itself with millions of unsold items on its hands.

According to Gartner estimates, “Global shipments of all devices (PCs, tablets, mobile phones) are on track to decline 7.6% in 2022.” The entire electronics industry expects a slowdown in revenue for the current year.

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