PC doomsayers received a little more ammunition from Gartner today, which announced that PC shipments in Western Europe totaled just 13.6 million units in the second quarter of 2012. That's a 2.4 percent decline to compared to the same period last year, and it's mostly due to slagging desktop PC sales, which dropped 12.8 percent year-over-year in Q2. Meanwhile, mobile PC shipments are picking up steam.
While the desktop struggled, mobile PC shipments grew 4 percent, Gartner said. Still, it wasn't enough to offset "weak overall PC shipments" across all of Western Europe, the market research firm noted.
Gartner didn't speculate why PC shipments dipped in Q2, though we suspect it has to do with the impending release of Windows 8. Businesses and users in need of an upgrade may find themselves in a holding pattern to see what kind of systems emerge under Microsoft's new touch-friendly OS, or look to score a deal on a Windows 7 system later this year.
Hewlett-Packard remains the top dog in PC shipments, and in Western Europe, the OEM commands a 20.2 percent share of the market despite a 13 percent decline in shipments. Acer is in second place at 17.3 percent after shipping 15.3 percent more PCs, and Asus, which increased shipments by 42.8 percent, is in third with a 10.7 percent share of the Western European market.