HP Inc. held its ground as the top PC vendor in the U.S. market during the second quarter, beating Lenovo and Dell and notching gains that outpaced competitors even as the market took a nearly 6 percent stateside nosedive and reached its lowest level worldwide in a decade, according to research firm Gartner.
HP's U.S. PC shipments rose 6.5 percent year-over-year while Dell finished in the No. 2 spot for the quarter with an increase of about 2 percent, according to Gartner.
The Gartner data also shows HP Inc. outpacing premium PC maker Apple, which saw U.S. shipments fall nearly 10 percent year-over-year in the second quarter.
The U.S. market accounts for about 20 percent of the PC market overall, and HP and Dell were the only two PC vendors to gain U.S. market share during the quarter. Together, the two top vendors control nearly 60 percent of the U.S. market, HP with a 30.5 percent share and Dell with 27.7 percent. Lenovo finished No. 3 in the U.S. PC market battle with shipments that tumbled more than 16 percent and a 13.2 percent share.
Michael Pearson, president of DSA Techologies, an Elk Grove, Calif.-based solution provider that works with all of the major PC vendors, said HP is hitting the right notes in a PC market that struggles to adapt to longer customer buying cycles and the rise of strong alternatives to traditional PCs, like Chromebooks and convertible tablets.
"They have products that people like," Pearson said of HP, "and on the business side, the split of HP and HPE may have gotten them to focus on the business. They've got their head on straight and they're doing well."
Dell has managed to keep pace with strong customer loyalty, Pearson said. "We rarely have Dell end-client people looking to move to some other product," he said. "They've done a good job with having a solid product mix. It's rare that anyone tells me they're looking at HP or Lenovo if they're already a Dell shop."
Still, Pearson sees a day when the traditional PC is simply a thing of the past. Customers are already stretching their machines well beyond the customary two- or three-year mark and are shopping for machines that provide better bang for their buck, he said.
"Clients are looking to get the biggest bang for their buck, and a convertible product that lets you have the laptop and the tablet in one, we see a lot of interest in those," Pearson said. "A non-touchscreen, plain laptop is just going to go away. We're seeing more of these products that can do all of these other things, and it's going to more and more important."
HP's U.S. shipments for the quarter ended June 30 were 4.27 million, up from 4 million a year prior, according to Gartner.