Reports of commercial PC deaths are greatly exaggerated. Market researchers at IDC claim that the PC industry’s post-pandemic sales freefall will end next year, with PC sales forecast to grow by 3.7 percent in 2024.
The recovery journey for PCs has faced its share of challenges after experiencing slowdowns in 2022 and 2023. However, there are now signs of growth on the horizon. According to research firm IDC, global PC shipments are expected to return to growth in 2024 despite contending with obstacles and competition from smartphones and tablets.
While the anticipated increase is modest, with a predicted growth rate of about 3.7 percent year-over-year in 2024, it still amounts to 261.4 million units. However, this shipment volume will be an increase from 2018’s 259.6 million, but still below the pre-pandemic levels seen in 2019.
Factors Driving Global PC Growth
Several factors contribute to IDC's optimistic outlook for commercial PC shipments in 2024. Firstly, a growing demand for high-performance computing power is driven by an increased need for gaming and multimedia applications. Consequently, the processor market is expected to experience growth.
This is a highly competitive market. We have witnessed shifts among the major players in recent years. AMD has managed to capture an 11 percent share in 2022, while Apple has slightly exceeded a 5 percent share during the period.
According to IDC, the growing interest in Generative AI has led IT decision-makers to ponder where they should allocate their budgets. Although PCs equipped with onboard AI engines are unavailable, they are on the horizon and will likely drive a resurgence in shipments. AI-powered PCs offer organizations the power to personalize the user experience at a deeper level while ensuring data security and maintaining control over their digital sovereignty.
Considering the rise of hybrid workforces, IDC reports that many IT decision-makers are paying attention to their employee's preferences regarding PC brands and types and whether multiple PCs are necessary for their tasks. Employees typically favor premium brands like Microsoft Surface for Business due to their enhanced capabilities and flexibility, which ultimately translates into profitability for partners.
In addition, Windows 10 is nearing the end of support on Oct. 14, 2025. This will likely encourage businesses to replace their inventory regardless of whether they are waiting for more advanced PCs or need to update their aging install base due to the Windows 11 upgrades.
Achieve Revenue Growth while Enhancing Business Performance
The success of the industry in seizing opportunities depends on its ability to innovate, create state-of-the-art devices, and adapt to evolving market dynamics. Microsoft partners can capitalize on the increasing demand for high-performance PCs by offering Microsoft Surface laptops and 2-in-1 PCs. This strategy will drive revenue growth and advance their business in 2024 and beyond.