DisplaySearch not afraid to count iPad: Apple #1 mobile PC maker in North America, #3 in world

Complete your iPad experience with ZAGGmate!Capturing a 12.4% share of global mobile PC shipments in Q3’10, Apple is benefiting from the iPad Effect, which continues to shake up the mobile PC market. According to preliminary results from the DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report*, Apple took the #3 position worldwide, and ranks #1 in North America as a result of the continued success of the iPad. The iPad accounts for an 8% share of global shipments of all mobile PCs. 95% of iPad shipments were to developed regions, primarily North America.

“A lack of competitive tablet PC products from other brands continues to drive Apple’s market share in the mobile PC segment. As the iPad continues its worldwide rollout, one developed region where the acceptance of the iPad has been weak is Japan, however. Questions of local language content and language-specific apps have slowed acceptance in this tech savvy region,” noted Chris Connery, Vice President of Large Format Displays at DisplaySearch. “As other players come to market with tablet PCs it will be interesting to see if they can move beyond the Western-centric nature of Apple’s product and develop an infrastructure to support local needs, especially with the growth of consumer spending in China on personal computing devices.”

“On a global scale, the adoption of iPad is not without its challenges,” noted Hidetoshi Himuro, Director of IT Market Research at DisplaySearch. “Localized content in non-English speaking regions is sparse, and iPad owners must have a PC for downloading content from iTunes. As a result, penetration in developing regions will be slow.”

HP maintained its position as the global leader in mobile PC shipments with 9.5 million units shipped in Q3’10, accounting for a 17.3% market share. Acer followed close behind with 9.1 million units shipped and a 16.5% market share. Apple’s MacBook shipments have also increased, but have not had the impact of the iPad. Without the iPad, Apple’s mobile PC share would be 4.8%, ranking #8 globally. The top five brands account for 65.2% of the total mobile PC market, as the strength of brand names continues to grow.

Source: DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report

In Q3’10, worldwide mobile PC shipments (which include tablet PCs) reached 55 million, up 9.6% Q/Q and 19% Y/Y, the highest volume since DisplaySearch first began to track this segment in 1999.

Both sequential and yearly growth seemed strong in many regions, but it should be noted that new personal computing devices such as netbooks and tablet PCs, as well as lower-priced notebooks, are driving most of the demand. In high-growth regions such as China, consumers still favor traditional desktop PC and external monitor configurations, typically purchased as a DIY (do-it-yourself) kit, for home use. However, the market is changing quickly in China, so the transition from desktop to mobile PCs is poised to happen much faster in this region than it did in others. Recognizing the evolving definition of a “personal computer,” especially for consumers, is key to understanding the true demand outlook.

Source: DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report

The DisplaySearch Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report covers the entire range of mobile PC products shipped worldwide and regionally. Covering global and regional brands, the Quarterly Mobile PC Shipment and Forecast Report provides an objective, expert view of the market with insight into historical shipments, revenues, forecasts and more.

Source: DisplaySearch

[Attribution: AppleInsider. Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Andrew W.” for the heads up.]


  1. If people are buying iPads instead of laptops, and a laptop is considered a “PC,” then an iPad obviously counts. Not that Apple really cares what people call it; those Apple commercials say “iPad is” just a bunch of cute adjectives. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  2. The fact that Macs are having one record quarter after another should annoy the PC OEMs.

    The fact that the iPad is outselling the Mac in less than 9 months should scare the crap out of them.

    They can’t bet on selling 10 of millions of units of their slate-du-jour. Apple can.

  3. This made me think a bit about how the iPad is being classified as a mobile PC. Specifically the part about having to own a desktop or laptop to take full advantage of the iPad (syncing, backups, and to a lesser extent adding apps – though one could and probably will argue having a PC isn’t necessary for that at all.) My point is that it got me thinking about that datacenter in NC and how Apple may leverage that to transform the iPad experience. Are offsite syncing and backup to a massive datacenter in the cards for the iPad or “iPad 2”? Does that make sense to anyone else? Apple certianly doesn’t want to do away with the standalone PC and has stated so several times that they see the role of the PC in the future as a device relegated to the more intense processes leaving content consumption to take place mainly on our mobile devices. In that future, will everyone really need a desktop to do the heavy lifting? I’d be willing to wager no, especially considering how capable the current iPad interface is.

  4. The iPad has a CPU, memory, storage space, an OS, Apple & 3rd party applications, works with Bluetooth keyboards,

    — and cost more than PC Netbooks! —

    So why on earth wouldn’t you count them?

  5. If an iPad counts as a PC, so should iPod and iPhone. Considering that, other smart phones should also be pcs. My only point is that the lines for such things have been blurred beyond the point of statistics like this having any value at all.

    That said, go Apple!

    Sent from my iPad.

  6. @Fumosus

    I, too keep running into this “must be linked to a desktop” comment and it occurs to me that Apple should produce a cheap desktop backup unit specifically designed to act as the base for it’s iDevices. It only needs to be able to communicate with iTunes, have a usb port (or dock), and enough disk space (or disk access via network) to back up your iPhone (etc). Instead of a screen, airplay to your phone. Might as well build it into the dock/keyboard unit. $200. Save the third world (who happen to be manufacturing it). Apple could sell it for this price because it’s useless until paired with iDevice(s). Apple would have to deliberately handicap it so as not to cut into Mac OS sales.

  7. @macerroneous

    I see what your getting at, but I’m going for more of a cut the cable scenario. Wireless aka inductive charging only needs to be implemented here and a move to a cloud based iTunes service that hosts not only app and music purchases but a host of other features such as remote sync and backup via mobile me would make the iOS devices true stand alone products and thus it would be more fitting to use (in my lowly opinion) the PC moniker.

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