Compaq ended 1996 ahead of the rest of the PC pack in the channel, consumer and overall PC markets, according to new US figures from market research group Computer Intelligence.
Total US unit shipments for the final quarter of 1996 were 7.7 million, up 15 per cent on the same period in 1995. Compaq took 14 per cent market share with shipments of 1.08 million units, well ahead of second-placed IBM, which shipped 740,000 units to clock up a 9.6 per cent market share. Packard Bell, Dell and Gateway 2000 made up the remainder of the top five with market shares of 8.5 per cent, eight per cent and 7.1 per cent respectively.
Compaq retained its lead in the channel with a 35 per cent share, up 63 per cent from last year?s figure of 26 per cent. But it faces competition from runner-up IBM, which enjoyed the highest percentage growth of 83 per cent. This took its share of the channel up from last year? 19 per cent to this year?s 26 per cent.
Hewlett-Packard took third place with 12 per cent of the market and a relatively poor growth rate of 30 per cent. Toshiba was in fourth place with nine per cent market share, while Apple?s troubles are reflected in its 13 per cent decline from eight per cent of the pie in the fourth quater of 1995, to this year's six per cent.
In the consumer market, aggressive pricing by Compaq left it with a 23 per cent market share, up 21 per cent on last year?s figure of 18 per cent. No such good fortune for Packard Bell however, which ended 1996 on 18 per cent market share, 40% down on last year. Toshiba appeared to reap much of the benefit of this decline, rising 114 per cent to increase its share from six per cent in Q4 1995 to 15 per cent.
IBM and HP closed off the top five positions with 11 per cent and nine per cent respectively, the former representing an 87 per cent growth on the previous year. Other notable figures were Apple?s 59 per cent decline in the consumer and retail sector to achieve only five per cent of the total sales. Apple chief executive Gil Amelio has made rebuilding consumer confidence in Apple one of the company?s top priorities in 1997.
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