A small miracle: HP PCs pass the Mac in Q1

6.7.2013 Simon Bradley

When we think of the just-barely contained catastrophe that the mobile and PC end of Hewlett-Packard’s business model has been over the last year, today’s news represents some welcome, and to HP; some amazing news: HP PCs sales in the U.S., grew at a faster rate during the first quarter of 2012 than Apple’s Mac sales!

According to IDC figures released last Wednesday, HP sold 4.6 million PCs in the U.S. during the quarter, a growth rate of 6.6 percent whereas Apple sold an estimated 1.7 million Macs, a growth rate of just 5 percent over the previous quarter.

It is of course fact that Hewlett-Packard is the world’s largest producer of computers by a long shot — it has 18 percent market share worldwide and 28 percent in the U.S. alone but Apple’s computers —specifically its MacBooks — have become a surprising success story for the company in the last year and a bit. The company’s market share doesn’t even come up in the top five globally, but in the U.S.;  Apple has worked and inched its way  all the way up to be the third-largest computer maker with roughly about a 10 percent share. And its sales growth rates have definitely  far surpassed its competitors’ over the last few quarters — in the fourth quarter of 2011, Apple was up at a high with 18 percent market share while HP was down at a whopping low with 25 percent year after year. So needless to say, this last quarter was a significant improvement for Hewlett-Packard.

Meanwhile, as was expected, the rest of the market saw an absolute minimum of growth — 2.3 percent the world over. But that’s a fraction more inspiring than the previous quarter, which saw a .17 percent decline in shipments from the previous year, so there was a lot to aspire to and they definitely pulled back better than expected.

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