China Surpassed the United States to Become the Largest PC Market in the World in the Second Quarter of 2011, According to IDC

IDC Press Release

Final results from the International Data Corporation (IDCWorldwide Quarterly PC Tracker show that PC shipments in the China market have exceeded those of the United States in the second quarter of 2011 (2Q11). Approximately 18.5 million units worth US$11.9 billion shipped in China during the quarter, compared to 17.7 million units worth US$11.7 billion in the U.S. China represented 22% of the global PC market’s unit shipments compared to the US at 21%.

On a full year basis, IDC still expects the U.S. to remain the largest market in 2011, with 73.5 million units forecast to be shipped in the U.S. versus 72.4 million in China. Similarly, holiday season buying in the U.S. will likely keep it ahead of China in the fourth quarter, especially as China’s market contracts after its third quarter summer promotions. IDC does not expect China to exceed the U.S. in full year shipments until 2012, when 85.2 million units are forecast to be shipped in China and 76.6 million units in the U.S.

“There are of course still risks ahead for China, including not just inflation but also the impact of economic conditions in the U.S. and Europe,” said Kitty Fok, Vice President for Greater China Research at IDC. “But in the meantime, the Chinese government’s 12th Five-Year Plan should help large enterprises in various infrastructure verticals to continue to move along, not to mention of course the ongoing efforts to increase consumer penetration in lower-tier cities.”

“China’s lead in the PC market is a huge shift that reflects the rising fortunes of emerging markets as well as the relative stagnation of more mature regions.” said Loren Loverde, Program Vice President, Worldwide PC Tracker. “While the immediate economic circumstances in the US and other markets had a significant impact on the timing of China’s move to the lead, they have not changed the trend, but accelerated it.”

Worldwide PC Market Share by Country, Q2 2011 (Historical) and Calendar Year 2011 and 2012 (Forecast) (Market Share based on Unit Shipments)

Country 2Q11 Market Share CY2011 Market Share CY2012 Market Share
PRC 22.0% 20.3% 21.8%
USA 21.0% 20.6% 19.6%
Others 57.1% 59.1% 58.5%
Total 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker, August 23, 2011


  • Shipments include shipments to distribution channels or end users. OEM sales are counted under the vendor/brand under which they are sold.
  • PCs include Desktops, Portables, Mini Notebooks and do not include handhelds, x86 Servers and Media Tablets (i.e. iPad and Android-based Tablets). Data for all vendors are reported for calendar periods.
  • Totals may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker gathers PC market data in over 80 countries by vendor, form factor, brand, processor brand and speed, sales channel and user segment. The research includes historical and forecast trend analysis as well as price band and installed base data.

For more information, or to subscribe to the research, please contact Kathy Nagamine at 650-350-6423 or In Asia/Pacific, please contact Sheryl Fuertez at +65-6829-7758 or

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