Study: Apple the fastest-growing U.S. PC maker

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Market research firm Gartner has posted information on worldwide PC shipments for the first calendar quarter of 2008, and the numbers look great for Apple. Gartner reports that Apple “experienced the strongest growth rate among the top 5 vendors in the U.S. market.”

Apple moved 1.01 million machines for the quarter in the United States, positioning it fourth behind Dell, HP and Acer. Gartner reports that Apple’s marketshare now stands at 6.6 percent, up from 5.4 percent for the same quarter a year ago. That’s a startling 32.5 percent growth rate — the fastest of any PC vendor on the list, and well ahead of Dell, which sits in the number one position with a 31.4 percent share and 15.7 percent year-over-year growth rate.

Gartner said that Apple’s growth was strong in retail sales, and there were indications that Apple expanded its presence in the professional market, too.

Mika Kitagawa, principal analyst for Gartner’s Client Computing Markets group, said that the U.S. market results were in line with Gartner’s expectations — modestly affected by the downturned economy in the United States, “although there was no fundamental change in market conditions.”

Gartner emphasized that the reported numbers are preliminary. Final statistics are to be made available soon to clients of Gartner’s PC Quarterly Statistics Worldwide by Region program.

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