Mac shipments grew in 2022 while PC tanked


M2 MacBook Air review roundup: The fast and the beauteous
A redesigned MacBook Air surely helped push up 2022 Mac shipments.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s shipments of Mac desktops and notebooks grew modestly in 2022, according to market research firm. That’s in stark contrast to shipments of PCs that dropped enormously last year.

And Apple could have done even better if it hadn’t pushed back the release of new Macs past the fourth quarter.

2022 Mac shipments don’t follow the trend

Analysts lump Apple in with other big computer makers, but Cupertino is generally a standout beyond even the obvious macOS/Windows difference. Strong customer loyalty means Apple is often immune to global market trends that negatively impact the PC market.

2022 is an excellent example. Mac shipments increased 2.5% when compared to the previous year, according to new IDC data. In comparison, the top PC makers saw an average annual decline of 16% in the same period.

Apple shipped 28.6 million traditional computers in 2022, giving it 9.8% of this market. That’s up 8.0% annually.

Lenovo’s shipments dropped 16.9% while HP’s plummeted 25.3%, according to IDC analysts. Dell’s shipments were down 16.1% and Asus’ declined 5.7%.

In defense of the PC industry, IDC’s Ryan Reith said, “2021 was near historic levels for PC shipments, so any comparison is going to be distorted.” But Mac shipments were up 22.1% in 2021 and it didn’t see a decline the following year, as all the Windows makers did.

Could have been even better

Apple broke decades of tradition in 2022 by not releasing any Macs in the final quarter of the year. Normally, refreshed MacBooks or other Macs come each autumn to body holiday sales. Not last year.

And it showed. Q4 shipments dropped 2.1% annually, according to IDC figures. The number would surely have been very different if Apple had introduced the expected Macs.

Still, it’s likely much of the shipments were shifted back, not lost. Leaks point to Apple introducing as many as five desktops and laptops in the first quarter of 2023. That includes a Mac Pro and M2 Mac mini, a 15-inch MacBook Air and upgraded 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros.


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