Lenovo is Number One

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ibm_pc20131014

The first IBM personal computer, 1981.

China-based Lenovo is now the world’s No. 1 personal computer maker, well, at least in the last quarter of 2013, this according to a recent data provided by industry research group Gartner last week.

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This is certainly great news for Lenovo. For the last couple of years, we’ve been seeing the continuing rise of Lenovo, and it was just a matter of time for the computer company to take the top position away from PC regulars HP and Dell.

Lenovo is a computer company that started its business aimed at the Chinese market back in 1988 under the name Legend Computers, and launched its first PC in 1990. Eight years later, Legend sold over a million personal computers making it a top computer brand in that part of the world.

In 2003, Legend changed its corporate name to Lenovo, then a year later, acquired IBM’s PC business division. The latter’s decision to dumped the PC, when in fact, it was the pioneering US-based tech giant who practically “invented’ the term and the medium in the 80s, was a big shock to the computer industry.

But IBM had other plans and that plan had nothing to do with personal computers. And they were right. The plan worked. A plan that focused largely on services and enterprise software and hardware. A plan that made IBM even bigger and stronger as a tech company. A plan that HP and Dell missed almost a decade ago and are struggling to do the same right now — desperate move to save their own companies from becoming tech relics.

And the latter two should move fast. One of the major computer markets the two tech giants are trying to save, which IBM dumped almost 10 years ago, is a market that Lenovo has already taken over, and will continue to dominate in the coming years, as industry analysts have pointed out in previous reports.

Here are the numbers from Gartner: Lenovo’s total shipments rose 2.8 percent compared to last year’s, giving the computer company a 17.6 percent share of the overall global market. While former Number 1 HP posted a 1.5 percent growth in shipments, bringing in 17.1 percent global market share.

Yet, despite the modest growth, PC sales are actually declining. In a Reuters report on the matter, here’s what they said about Gartner’s study: “The latest numbers showed an 8.6 percent decline in PC sales in the third quarter, confirming a worldwide trend towards tablets that has benefited Apple Inc and Google Inc but hurt traditional PC stalwarts Microsoft Corp and Intel Corp.”

Adding: “Worldwide PC shipments totaled 80.3 million in the latest three month period, the lowest level since 2008, Gartner said.”

Is the PC really dead? Maybe not for Lenovo. Not yet. But right now, it’s certainly a bitter pill to swallow for both HP and Dell.

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