Work-From-Home Kills Desktops, Helps Chromebook Growth In 2020

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Work-from-home policies appear to be killing the 2020 desktop industry despite overall PC gains and growth in the Chromebook market. That's based on details in the latest Canalys report on the overall PC market. Specifically for the third quarter of 2020.

The total market is up by 23-percent over last year. That's with a total of 124.5 million units shipped. Chromebooks are leading the charge in terms of category split too. That's hardly surprising since they didn't make up a large segment of the general consumer market, to begin with. Chromebooks grew to a total of 9.4 million units shipped. That's an increase over the last year of 122-percent.

The remaining growth, conversely, was all in the diverse array of portable computers. More directly, from detachable at 88-percent to 'slates' at 21-percent and dedicated clamshell laptops at just 1-percent growth. Desktops did not fare so well, regardless of their size. Standard desktops fell 27-percent while towers and small desktops fell by 33-percent. The overall market decrease for desktops was 32-percent.

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The only desktop market to make gains is the "all-in-ones" category. That grew by 7-percent.

This growth means that Chromebooks are still steadily gaining in popularity in 2020

The Chromebook segment leads in 2020 growth but various companies are doing better overall than others too. Lenovo, which makes some of the best Chromebooks and laptops around, led on market share at 18.9-percent. On growth, that's just an 11.6-percent increase.

In terms of Chromebooks, Lenovo took the second position behind HP but ahead of Dell, Acer, and ASUS.

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Apple presents the biggest potential threat for a mix-up in the overall PC, tablet, and laptop space. It grew 40.9-percent annually to take 17.7-percent of the market. HP, Dell, and Samsung took the next spots on the list, in that order.

Tablets may be the real breakout sector here

But tablets are the other real breakout for year-over-year growth in Q3 2020. At a rate of 42-percent, in fact. Chromebooks are not going to be a leading factor in that sector. So it remains to be seen whether new and upcoming devices such as the Lenovo IdeaPad Chromebook Duet can make headway.

Apple still leads in the space with a 34.4-percent market share, followed by Samsung at 20.4-percent. Huawei and Amazon fall in behind that with 11.5- and 11.3-percent respectively. And Lenovo takes the remaining named-brand slot from Canalys with 9.1-percent of the market.

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