The tablet category is continuing to eat the PC’s lunch, albeit it’s a large lunch so the feast is taking a while. Analyst Gartner expects worldwide tablet shipments to grow 53.4% [Gartner has issued a correction to its earlier figures] this year, with shipments reaching 184 million units. And while traditional PCs are still shipping a lot more units (303,100 forecast for this year), those shipments are continuing to decline — predicted to be down 11.2% on 2012 shipments.
That’s lower even than Gartner’s prior forecast, back in April, when it said it expected PCs to decline 7.3% this year.
Growth in the so-called ultramobile category — aka lightweight laptops and portables running a full desktop OS such as Microsoft’s Surface Pro tablet – is offsetting the traditional PC decline somewhat. But even adding in that category, overall PCs plus ultramobiles are forecast to decline 8.4% this year. Gartner previously said it expects tablets to be outshipping desktop computers and ultramobiles combined by 2017.