Notebook sales were ahead of forecast in the third quarter, rising 11% from the second quarter to 43.2 million. While Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) market share put it in third place, its share growth outpaced all of its competition.
Research firm TrendForce researchers wrote:
After experiencing shipment slump in the first half of 2015, branded notebook vendors aim to finish the year off with a strong recovery by making a comeback with an all-out effort to expand their shipments. Notebook demand remained strong in the U.S. and started to pick up in China. The stabilization of currency exchange rates has also resulted a gradual turnaround in the European notebook market
Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ), soon to be broken into two companies, kept its place as the number one vendor, and units shipped moved higher by 10.2%, below the industry average. However, its market share was 20.2%. Following it, China-based Lenovo posted growth of 11.1%, just above the industry average (excluding brands it acquired). This gave it a 19.7% share. Dell, about to buy EMC, posted an increase of 18.3%.
Apple’s growth rate was 19.8%, which took its market share to 11.8%. According to TrendForce:
Apple saw high shipment growth for MacBooks in the third quarter due to strong demand from North America, which is the vendor’s main market. The new 12-inch MacBook Air that was launched in the second quarter was well received by consumers and also added a new market segment for this product line. Furthermore, there was a surge in shipments of updated MacBook models in the third quarter. These factors resulted in a huge quarterly rise of 19.8% in the overall shipments during this period.
Mac sales are no longer key to Apple’s overall success. Apple sold 5.7 million Macs in its most recently reported quarter, which brought in revenue of $6.9 million of Apple’s $51.5 billion. That was up 14% from the previous quarter, as measured by revenue, but only 4% from the same quarter a year ago.
The Mac may no longer come close to being critical to Apple’s sales, but at least that has not hurt its level of growth.