PC Market Still Growing in Latin America, Africa, Middle East; Ultraportables and Chromebooks

The personal computer market still is growing, despite perceptions of demise, according to researchers at ABI Research. In part, that perception is driven by the ways researchers categorize PC sales, now driven by portable units.

Also, sales growth also now is driven by buyers in Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, so growth might be as visible in Asia, North America or Europe.

To be sure, 2016 shipments of laptops wil fall nearly three percent, after a dip of one percent in 2015. But “ultraportable” shipments, which fell three percent in 2015, will grow nearly 11 percent in 2016.

And Chromebooks, which some might not consider “PCs,” grew 27 percent in 2015 and will grow about 21 percent in 2016, ABI Research forecasts.

Notebook PC Segment YoY Change (%)
2015
2016
Chromebook
27.1%
21.2%
Laptop
-1.0%
-2.8%
Ultraportable
-3.2%
10.9%
Total
-0.5%
0.4%

Notebook PC Segment Shipments (Millions)
2015
2016
2021
Chromebook
6.2
7.6
11.6
Laptop
129.7
126.1
116.3
Ultraportable
27.1
30.0
41.2
Total
163.0
163.7
169.1

ABI Research predicts that ultraportable PCs will constitute more than 24 percent of total notebook PC unit volume in 2021.

Chromebooks will continue to dominate the education market in 2016, as school initiatives drive toward 1:1 student deployments with a technology device.

And though the majority of Chromebooks historically shipped in the United States, the education trend is beginning to see growth in other regions, notably Western Europe.

ABI Research predicts that Chromebooks will represent nearly seven percent of all notebook PC shipments in 2021.

In all, data suggests regional growth from the notebook PC category will stem from Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa over the next five years.
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