Apple Shipped More PCs than HP in Q4 2011, But Only If You Count iPads

Paul Lilly

Break out the Apple cider if you live in/near Cupertino, California, and toast your hometown PC representatives for dethroning Hewlett-Packard as the worldwide client PC vendor in the fourth quarter of 2011, but only if you're willing to include tablet shipments in the overall tally. If you are, then congrats, Apple's iPad put your home team over the top and was three times more responsible for the achievement than Macs.

Apple shipped over 15 million iPad devices in Q4 2011 and 5 million Macs, representing 17 percent of the 120 million client PCs shipped globally during that period, according to data released by analyst firm Canalys . The client PC market as a whole grew 16 percent in the final quarter of 2011, though if you take away tablet sales, Canalys says it declined by 0.4 percent.

Out of the remaining top five PC vendors, only Lenovo increased its market share, gaining 2 percentage points compared to Apple's 6 percent gain over the same quarter from one year prior. Acer, Dell, and HP all lost market share, with HP being the hardest hit, according to Canalys.

"Currently, HP is pursuing a Windows strategy for its pad portfolio, producing enterprise-focused products, such as the recently launched Slate 2, until the launch of Windows 8,:" said Canalys Analyst Tim Coulling. "However, questions remain over Microsoft’s entry into the consumer pad space. While early demonstrations of the Window 8 operating system seem promising, Microsoft must focus its efforts on creating an intuitive user experience that is far less resource intensive."

Do you think tablets should be included when tallying PC sales and shipments?

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