The PC Market Is Dying, Even For Apple. But Apple Has A Plan.

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Slowly but surely, the worldwide PC market is drying up. In the first quarter, a recent report from IDC says that worldwide PC shipments have slipped 4.4% year-over years. And not even Apple has proven immune to the wasting away of the PC market, but they’re still making up for it on other ways.

In the report, IDC says that worldwide PC shipments totalled just 73.4 million units in the first quarter of 2014, down over last year.

Lenovo is doing the best trade, mostly through business deals: they shipped 12.9 million units. HP was next at 12.55 million, Dell in third at 9.8 million, and Acer and ASUS made the list and fourth and fifth place.

In the United States, HP is the number one PC shipper, followed by Dell, Lenovo, and then Apple, who is fourth. Again, you can likely put most of HP, Dell, and Lenovo’s success on corporate deals. That said, Apple is likely the most profitable U.S. PC maker: even at fourth place, the competition is selling their models at razor thin margins just to get them out the door.

This is all reflective of a general crisis going on in the PC industry.

According to the IDC’s Vice President of Worldwide PC Trackers, Loren Loverde, “Worldwide PC shipments have now declined for eight consecutive quarters as a result of shifting technology usage and competition (notably with tablets & smartphones) as well as economic pressures (including high unemployment, slow growth & investment, tight credit, and currency fluctuations) related to the Great Recession, sovereign debt crises, and their related impact on international trade.”

The difference between Apple and these other companies, though, is that Apple’s eating its own lunch: it has made up for lower Mac sales with higher iPhone and iPad sales. And while they’re at it, they’re eating the competition’s lunch too.

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About the author

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is a Contributing Editor. He has also written for Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, VentureBeat, and Gizmodo. He lives in Boston with his girlfriend and two parakeets. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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