After a terrible quarter, the recovery of the PC market in China will mainly benefit Apple

A current 16-inch MacBook Pro with M2 Max

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New research says overall sales of desktops, laptops and tablets in China fell, but Apple saw growth – and will be the main beneficiary of an expected recovery.

Canalys has previously reported that the Apple Watch Ultra will drive significant growth in the Chinese wearables market in 2022. Now for Apple, it’s seeing growth in desktops and especially notebooks, although in both cases that comes from what is currently a small share.

“Canalys expects shipments of PCs (desktop, notebook and workstation) to stabilize in 2023, with approximately 48.3 million shipments to maintain a similar shipment level as in 2022,” the company says. “The commercial sector will bounce back by 10% in 2023, thanks to the gradual recovery of the local economy and activity.”

“In the notebook segment,” it continued, “Apple’s upcoming MacBook (2023) and its efforts to penetrate businesses will increase MacOS market share with an expected growth of nearly 16% in 2023.”

Apple is not among the top five suppliers for desktop and notebook shipments, according to figures from Canalys that list the company only under “Other”. The top seller for 2022 was Lenovo, which was down 15.5% year-over-year to about 19 million devices.

For tablets, however, Apple tops analysts’ numbers for Q4 2022 shipments. About 2.7 million iPads were sold in mainland China, a year-over-year growth of 72.9%.

Stabilizing turnover in 2023, recovery in 2024

Despite expecting an Apple laptop to do well, the company believes overall notebook sales will decline before the market recovers.

Canalys expects desktops (including desktop workstations) to grow 15% to 17.3 million units in 2023, while notebooks (including mobile workstations) will decline 7% to 30.9 million units.

Oddly, Canalys only says “upcoming MacBook”, it doesn’t specify MacBook Pro or MacBook Air. There has already been a 2023 MacBook Pro, so presumably the company is referring to this plus an upcoming MacBook Air.

The MacBook Air may better fit the company’s belief that consumer demand will recover after business purchases do.

“The medium-term outlook for the PC market will depend on the recovery of business and consumer confidence,” says Canalys analyst Emma Xu, “as the newly formed government pledges to boost consumption and prioritize disposable income. increase in 2023.”

Source: Canalys

Source: Canalys

However, Canalys first expects the “consumer segment … to still see a 9% decline as recovery is not expected until the fourth quarter”.

This new report does not cover smartphone sales, which are expected to restore consumer demand. However, analyst Xu believes the interconnected nature of Apple’s ecosystem will prove to be an asset.

“Consumer awareness of the ‘connected device ecosystem’ will continue to rise,” Xu writes. “Vendors focused on cross-device user experience are likely to attract the upgraders and the younger generation.”

Canalys recently reported on how Apple has arguably conquered Generation Z through this ecosystem.

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