January 18, 2006 5:05 PM PST

Europe tops North America as largest PC market

Although everyone obsessed about China, Europe turned out to be a pretty good market for PC makers last year.

PC shipments to the Europe, Middle East and African region came to 72.6 million in 2005, or 33.2 percent of the total shipped during the year, according to research firm Gartner. North America accounted for 67.1 million, or 30.7 percent, of shipments.

This marked the first time that Europe saw more PC shipments than the U.S. In 2004, 62.4 million PCs shipped to North America while 62 million went to Europe. European shipments grew 17.1 percent during the last year while North American shipments grew by 7.5 percent.

Shipments to the Asia-Pacific and Latin America grew at a faster rate--26 percent--but the number of PCs shipped to both regions was lower. About 42.8 million PCs were shipped to Asia. Asia, however, produces more PCs than other regions, which explains why Intel sells more chips there than to Europe or North America.

A strong euro and demand for notebooks, particularly among consumers, lifted European sales, according to Gartner.

One of the big beneficiaries of stronger European sales was Acer, which has targeted European notebook consumers. The Taiwanese company has been the fastest-growing PC manufacturer for two years. In 2005, Acer grew shipments by 58.1 percent and saw its market share grow from 3.4 percent to 4.6 percent.

Gartner said PC shipments grew by 15.3 percent during the year, slightly lower than the 16.4 percent annual growth rival IDC said occurred. The difference between the shipment figures from IDC and Gartner reflects the different methodologies of the two research firms. However, the figures from the two rarely differ radically.

10 comments

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Since when did
The midddle east and Africa become part of "Europe"? I guess I should have spent more time on school work and less time drinking beer when I was in school.

In other news, the weak American dollar + the Japaneese Yen + the Chineese Yuan surpassed half the value of the euro.
Posted by Dachi (797 comments )
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Oh but since...
China is now part of Europe, They use the Euro too!
Posted by wazzledoozle (288 comments )
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Wow.
What are you on? Sorry, but I just don't get it.
Posted by xtuser (18 comments )
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makes sense after all
nowadays, American computers can stand the test of time... just
ask my friend and his now 6 year old computer that still
outperforms most other ones...and on the other hand, other
nations are now just starting to replace their old computers, so it
stands to reason that they take in more than America for a
change... makes sense after all, doesn't it?
Posted by Ian O'Shaughnessy (12 comments )
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no chance
theres no way in hell that a 6 year old computer can possibly out perform recent computers, thats just completely false.
Posted by assman (1101 comments )
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Lol, what?
Europe has more consumers. That's all.
Posted by Mutex (40 comments )
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Non-story
Let's compare per-capita purchases. There are only 290 million people in the USA and there are 700 million in Europe. So their per-capita purchasing is less than half of the USA.

There is another problem with this story also. What countries did they include as Europe? The current members of the EU?

Hey news.com, why don't you give us stories that really say something instead of a sensational headline with no meaningful information.
Posted by rblanchette (4 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Europe = EU
Practically all country's outside the EU are almost 3e world
economy's, 90% of the European computer sales are in the EU.

What did strike me is the Middle East and African region that
together only bought 2,5 million computers.
Posted by Peter Bonte (316 comments )
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