John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Mac Sales Outpace Market… Again

There’s really no other way to say this: The Mac is kicking ass. Not only is its growth outpacing that of the broader market, it’s doing it in virtually every segment from government to enterprise.

March marked the 20th consecutive quarter that Mac shipment growth exceeded that of the PC market.

Mac shipments grew 27.7 percent in March, a period that saw a 1.2 percent decline in total PC shipments, according to IDC data reported by Needham analyst Charlie Wolf. And that growth occurred in every single major regional market.

In Europe, Mac sales were up 10 percent year over year, while the PC market was down 17.5 percent; in Asia they were up 69.4 percent, while the PC market was up just 8.8 percent. And in Japan, Macs were up 21.1 percent in a PC market that declined 16.1 percent.

The story was pretty much the same in the PC market’s various segments. Mac shipments to business grew at a “torrid” 66 percent pace in a market that posted just 4.5 percent year over year. Shipments to government spiked 155.6 percent versus the broader market’s 2.3 percent. And shipments to the home market grew 21.6 percent, while those of PCs slipped 6.5 percent.

That’s some extraordinary growth, particularly since it’s largely organic. “… Shipment growth has resulted solely from an outward shift in the demand curve rather than from a relative reduction in Mac prices,” Wolf observes. Interestingly, the average price of a Mac has fallen at just 1.6 percent annually since 2005.

So what’s the engine of all this growth–aside, of course, from the Mac itself?

Apple’s iOS devices and its carefully cultivated retail presence.

“The key drivers of the growth in Mac shipments over the past five years have been the halo effects emanating from the iPod and iPhone,” Wolf says. “The Apple Stores have played an important supporting role in providing convenient destinations and support resources for Windows users new to the Mac.”

And those three things will become even more powerful drivers of Mac sales as Apple extends the reach of the iPhone and iPad with an ever-expanding rollout of international Apple Stores. Says Wolf, “The iPhone is competing in the mobile phone market, one measured in billions of units rather than the portable music player market, one measured in millions of units. Of course, the iPad is waiting in the wings.”

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