Gartner Inc. reported Friday that despite disappointing results for most vendors shipping computers in the United States, Apple has leapfrogged Toshiba to become the fifth largest vendor of PCs for the region, based on Gartner’s estimates of shipments made during the first calendar quarter.
“Apple’s PC shipments in the United States increased 45.1 percent in the first quarter,” reported Gartner.
For the fiscal quarter ending in March, Apple reported 477,000 CPU units shipped for its Americas segment, which include North, South and Central America. The company also reported another 144,000 units shipped through its Retail segment, which includes domestic and international Apple Stores. Gartner estimates Apple shipped 571,000 units in North America specifically — 3.7 percent marketshare, a 45.1 percent increase over the same calendar quarter in 2004, when Apple held 2.6 percent of the U.S. market.
“The growth of the iMac and PowerBook categories were key drivers for the company,” reported Gartner. Apple reports iMac G5, eMac and Mac mini sales together in the “iMac” category, and that’s where the company saw its single biggest improvement. Apple reported 115 percent unit growth year-over-year in that segment globally — the company does not publicly divulge unit shipments per product in its regional operating segments. For the same quarter a year ago, Apple only shipped 217,000 iMac-class CPU units.
Dell Inc. remains in the number one position in the U.S. market, with a marketshare of 32 percent — an 8.5 percent improvement for the same quarter a year ago. Dell shipped a total of 4.87 million computers during the quarter. Gartner noted that Dell’s worldwide growth rate fell below 20 percent for the first time in 10 quarters, however, pulled down by weaker performance in the U.S. market.
With 2.62 million units shipped, Hewlett-Packard also saw modest growth, with 17.2 percent of the U.S. market, a 3.3 percent increase over the same quarter last year. Gateway, approaching its one-year merger with eMachines, saw the most dramatic change — 826,000 units shipped, a 23.4 percent loss over last year, slipping to 5.4 percent share. IBM was in fourth place with 4.1 percent share, shipping 623,000 units for the quarter — 1.7 percent growth year-over-year.