Quarterly PC Shipments Fell Below 63M Units For the First Time In 10 Years

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jtd871

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So these figures seem to be for major OEM shipments. How are DIYers or boutique builders using wholesale/retail parts accounted for?
 

why_wolf

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You'd have to get numbers on shipments for parts. Either motherboards or CPUs to get a good guess for completed builds. The trend is probably fairly similar in the big picture. It's not as if millions of people stopped buy HP and just built their own. Most people are just sitting on the machine they already have for way longer than before or completely ditching them because their iPad does everything they actually need on its own.
 

InvalidError

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Between entry to mid-range PCs being more than good enough for the bulk of people's home and office use for increasingly long periods, and more people moving more of their personal computing to other devices, the traditional x86 PC market is going to continue shrinking for the foreseeable future.

Next year, we'll probably get the same story telling us that PC shipments have hit a 12-13 years low.
 


Note the "Others" in the charts. I would assume that includes the boutique builder sales. Home builder numbers with parts are not included here. It's really hard to get a bead on those numbers due to people only buying components. Are they buying for a new build or just a simple upgrade of a few components?

Would it be entirely accurate to say that someone who bought a new motherboard, CPU, and memory upgrade while keeping the other hardware was a new PC shipment? Then you have people buying upgrade components for their OEM PC purchases like memory, GPUs, and power supplies. Then you have others just replacing a single item due to an early failure in their DIY build. I don't think that can possibly be tracked with any accuracy except through surveys which themselves are prone to errors and falsehoods.

If anything, I think major component sales numbers would need to be separated and accounted for separately. Have retail box sales of motherboards, CPUs, GPUs, memory, etc. gone up, down or remained relatively flat over the past 15 years? That's the numbers I'd like to see. And I know they are out there between Etailers like NewEgg and brick & mortar stores like Fry's Electronics and MicroCenter.

 

Tech_TTT

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most people are assembling their pc now ...

However , the Used PC market is growing , because even SandyBridge CPU are still strong enough ...
 


Uhm, no. The last figures I saw from a couple of years ago was that over 90% of PCs in use were OEM purchased, not home-built. That was overall PCs in use which included office PCs as well as home PCs. Now drill down to say gaming PCs only, and that number of OEMs goes way down.

But yeah, even my six year old Sandy Bridge i5 2500K is running solid as a good backup PC gaming rig as well as general productivity use PC (Microsoft Office, Photoshop, Blu-Ray movie watching, etc.).

 

InvalidError

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Of everyone I know, I think I might be the only one who still builds his PCs from scratch. One person I know buys pre-built, pre-tested Dell-Alienware PCs for gaming because he cannot be bothered to fit custom cooling himself and another who is knowledgeable enough to build himself has butterfingers, scrapped a CPU because of it and now has me do his building and upgrading. The rest of people I know either don't own a PC that I know of, have never opened one or use laptops.
 

MobiusSS

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In addition to owning a sign shop, I run a small PC building and repair business from home. The simple fact is that, compared to 15-20 years ago, you just don't need to get new computers very often, since the old ones still do everything you need to do at an acceptable pace. Most of my customers are local small businesses. In the past, they got new computers every 2-3 years because the new ones were that much better, and the main software they used would run poorly on their two year old hardware. I used to sell to home users and gamers as well, and their product cycles were even shorter because of the advances in games. Now the gamers all use consoles, and the businesses just keep using the computers they bought 10 years ago. Everything still runs fast, so there is no perceived need. The only time I build a new computer for them now is when they hire new people or open new offices.
 

why_wolf

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Be interesting to see the breakdown between desktop, all in ones, and laptops from these sale numbers. I imagine that most people these days are opting for laptops followed by all in ones due to their convenience over a traditional desktop.

But yeah like MobiusSS said the age of Moore's law is over. It's no longer necessary to upgrade your hardware ever two years to be able to use the programs you need. At this point the hardware has more than enough headroom to run what you need across multiple version upgrades of a particular program. Unlike the 80/90s where you had to have that new Pentium if you wanted any chance of being able to run software 199X in a usable manner.
 

rwinches

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Not taking into account refurbished PCs and Laptops.
There are lots of great deals on refurb off lease business systems many have SSD drives installed and these are just fine for WEB cruisers that Stream vids and use social media.
Just watch how fast items on Woot sellout.
 

why_wolf

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Yes that too. I only buy refurbished machines to outfit the drones at my job. HP Elite 8100 still gets the job done.
 

cbag

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My office is still using HP Compaq 6000 Pro. These are all in ones with Core 2 Duo and 4gb ram. They are showing their age and I wish they would upgrade, if not the whole thing at least more ram.
 


I still have my Core2 gaming rig from 2009 when I built it. It started out as an E8400 gaming overclocked rig, but three years later I upgraded it to a quad Q9500 and added 4GB ram to 8GB to keep it alive. The C2 build still does well in productivity apps but gaming with it with old GTX 275s in SLI is not just happening these days. Even my six year old Sandy Bridge build with 680 SLI is showing its age in today's games.

 

InvalidError

Titan
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I suspect most people simply have no reason to upgrade.

My current PC (i5-3470) is over four years old, this has never happened before. I used to get the upgrade itch by the third year mark if not sooner but currently have no upgrade itch whatsoever - there is nothing on the market that I consider worth buying in terms of cost-to-benefits. At this rate, I might not be upgrading my PC until two more generations from now.
 
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