like the analyst powers have reached somewhat of a consensus on Apple’s Mac sales, but despite both IDC and Gartner confirming nice sales growth, it still wasn’t enough for Apple to rule the lot. In fact, despite the growth, Mac sales have slipped to 5th place according to both analyst firms' preliminary results.
IDC reports that Apple’s US Mac sales went up 31% in Q4 2009 whereas Gartner’s data says that Apple’s year-over-year growth stands at 23%, but confirms that it’s still not enough to keep the fruit-themed company from slipping to 5th position, one place lower than in the same time last year. In comparison to Q3, Apple has reportedly seen three or even fourfold Q4 growth but it still wasn’t enough to match impressive sales growth achieved by HP and Toshiba, which grew their sales by 45% and 71% respectively.
Gartner’s analyst Mikako Kitagawa says that Q4 has proven to be very price driven and increasing market share without the company’s presence on the low-priced component markets is “absolutely” difficult, as Apple has obviously seen for itself. Kitagawa says that US sales were largely driven by low priced notebooks and netbooks, something where HP, Acer and Toshiba obviously excelled. IDC gave a similar explanation claiming that the US market has “exploded” in Q4 and while most vendors introduced attractive pricing to stimulate demand, Apple did no such thing.
IDC’s numbers say that Apple sold 1.52 million Macs (7.4% market share) in the US whereas Gartners numbers put Apple’s sales at 1.48 million (7.5% share). It’s worth noting that these estimates are lower than in Q3, where Gartner and IDC placed Mac sales share at 8.8% and 9.4% respectively. Kitagawa attributed this to the educational market, where Apple has a strong presence, and says that Apple always shows a “spike in the third quarter”.
On another note, Gartner said that the global PC sales increase has seen 22.1% growth, which is the largest growth in the last 7 years.