Apple drops 5.7% to fourth place or rises 28% in Q4 U.S. PC shipments, depending who you ask


IDC has announced preliminary PC shipment numbers for the fourth quarter of 2013, with Apple dropping from third to fourth place on the list. Apple shipped about 438,000 fewer machines than the same quarter in the previous year, allowing Lenovo to catch up and overtake them, despite Lenovo’s gain of only 163,000 shipped units.

HP, Dell, and Toshiba maintained the same positions as the previous year. While most companies lost a portion of their market share this year, Lenovo and Dell managed to claim most of the free space in the market. Overall the market saw a 1.6% drop over last year’s sales—about 285,000 shipments.


Gartner, on the other hand, reports that Apple actually gained quite a bit of market share. How these two numbers are so far apart is a mystery, but it’s possible that IDC included Surface-style tablets in its numbers, potentially skewing the results in comparison to Gartner’s numbers.

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  1. Umm.. you might want to check the date of that IDC report you referenced. It’s from January 10, 2013 and is giving 2012 shipment numbers. Your competitors are saying Mac shipments grew by 28%.

  2. tincan2012 - 9 years ago

    So IDC has a drop of 5.7% while Gartner says Apple ‘surged’ with increase of 28%.
    These guys are all guessing about sales, and can’t even be straight on the number shipped.

  3. Funny how Mac Rumors is reporting the other way around… “U.S. Mac Sales Grow 28.5% in Holiday Quarter, PC Market Suffers Worst Decline Ever”…

    Which is true..? Different companies come out with different surveys…

  4. Joel Heflin - 9 years ago

    Why report numbers that are meaningless? I guarantee I’m more qualified to guess how many computers Apple sold than whoever put out this report. Like others have said Gartner is giving information that totally contradicts the IDC report. Real journalism would involve reading information from multiple sources and then bringing the story to the readers. This article is clearly only expressing one opinion that could possibly be far from the truth.

  5. willo (@mozfart) - 9 years ago

    Whoever paids Gartner/IDC the most will get the best stats. Enuff said… You want numbers? Go read Q reports once they´re out.

  6. Torrey Huerta - 9 years ago

    A guy could get whiplash from reading these positive and negative articles.

  7. Peter Ostrowski - 9 years ago

    Why does IDC only show 1.68m macs sold 4th qtr 2012 (apples 1st qtr) when apple said they sold 5.2m macs? Looks like they are not including apple store sales, so yes both of these reports are worthless

  8. rettun1 - 9 years ago

    Anticipation of the new Mac Pro probably affected this a little, if true

  9. Jon C (@JonCBK) - 9 years ago

    Someone is going to be very embarrassed when the real numbers come out. This is a 600,000 shipment difference between the estimates for 4Q2013 sales. Just a mammoth difference.

  10. Isn’t it astonishing that there are folks who pay money for this “information”?

  11. PMZanetti - 9 years ago

    I don’t understand why people ever rarely mention the market share number that HASN’T changed in a very long time….Apple owns 90% of all computers over $1000.

    • drtyrell969 - 9 years ago

      That’s an interesting fact, and that makes sense. never seen that published, but still believable.

    • frankman91 - 9 years ago

      I just put together a new i7, ASRock motherboard, 32 gig of RAM, SSD and a ASUS660 video card and that was just shy of a grand, I would say it would monster any mac I ever used that was in the $1000 price range.

      You might like MACS and think they have their advantages, but price for performance is definitely not one of them. I don’t know what you were bringing that (what I am sure is true) fact for.

      And don’t think for a second that PC power users are cheap, because people that are in my circle of nerd friends go all out on stuff like $150 mechanical keyboards and liquid cooled CPU’s.

  12. What the hell is a “shipment”? A shipment would imply that every $300 PC notebook has the same value as an $1100 MacBook Air. Does anyone else this as a faulty indicator of performance?

    • frankman91 - 9 years ago

      Not really. Most users of any computer are not what I would call power users, they surf the web, order Expedia vacations, and write papers in Microsoft office. So the $1100 MacBook Air has no real measurable advantage over the $300 PC. If you are measuring how many people are buying what type of computers that OS is the only concern because people are buying one or the other.