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HP, Gateway Boost PC Ship Numbers

New York — Hewlett Packard and Gateway posted strong year-over-year PC shipment gains during the first quarter, while Dell retained its position as the top U.S. PC shipper, but on almost flat growth.

Overall, the U.S. market Gartner reported 16.3 million units shipped for a 7.4 percent growth, while IDC’s research had growth at 5.3 percent on 15.4 million units shipped.

Dell found itself in the unusual position of not posting a double-digit U.S. shipment increase for the second consecutive quarter, with its growth staked at less than 1 percent during the first quarter, according to reports from Gartner and IDC. In the fourth quarter of 2005 growth was in the 9 percent range.

Gartner attributed this to Dell possibly focusing more on profitability then pushing out boxes. Dell’s performance did not impact its overall standings. The company lost a couple of market-share points, according to each research firm, with IDC giving Dell 32.3 percent on 4.9 million units shipped, and Gartner rating the company at 29.8 percent on 4.8 million units shipped.

Third-place Gateway posted the most stunning improvement — almost double its unit ship rate to 1.2 million, giving the company just over 7 percent of the market. HP’s healthy 15 percent growth for the period gave it about 19 percent of the market, according to both firms.

“HP appears to have benefited from channel efforts and aggressive pursuit of consumers while Gateway made gains in the public sector in addition to the consumer market,” IDC said in its report.

Toshiba and Apple rounded out the U.S. top five shippers. Toshiba posted a very strong 25 percent increase supported by continued strong sales of notebook computers. Apple’s share remained the same on flat 3 percent growth.

The U.S. again lagged the combination European, Middle East and Africa region in shipments, with the latter group seeing 12.6 percent increase on 19 million units shipped.

Overall worldwide shipments increased about 13 percent with Dell, HP and Lenovo the top three vendors.