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Compaq (Barely) Hangs On To Top Share Slot

Compaq barely managed to hold off Dell and retain the lead in PC market share for the second quarter in the U.S., according to reports issued by Dataquest and International Data Corp. (IDC).

Dataquest, San Jose, Calif., gave Compaq 16.8% of U.S. PC shipments, while IDC, Framingham, Mass., placed Compaq at 16.6%. Dell accounted for 16.4% of the market, said Dataquest, while IDC gave the direct marketer 16.3%.

The U.S. PC market itself grew about 28.6% to just more than 10 million units for the quarter, and nearly 25 million PCs shipped worldwide, both companies reported. Compaq and Dell were neck-and-neck in units shipped in the U.S., with the former at 1.68 million computers and the latter at 1.65 million, according to Dataquest.

Compaq and Dell did increase their share compared to the same period in 1998, when Compaq held 14.2% of the market, with 1.1 million units shipped, and Dell had 14% on 1.09 million units shipped, Dataquest said.

IBM, Gateway and Hewlett-Packard fleshed out the remainder of Dataquest’s top five PC vendors. The primary change this year was that IBM jumped from fifth place to tie Gateway for third and in the process pushed Hewlett-Packard down into the fifth spot.

Gateway and IBM each garnered 8.4% of the market on unit shipments of 845 million and 841 million, respectively. For second-quarter 1998, Gateway had 8% of the market on 619 million units shipped, with IBM holding down 6.3% of the market on 493 million units shipped.

In second-quarter 1999, Dataquest had HP shipping 817 million PCs, which equated to an 8.2% share, up from the 7.3% market share on 567 million units shipped for the quarter last year.

The IDC numbers positioned the three differently, and in its list IBM took sole possession of third place with 8% of the market, while Gateway and HP shared the last spot with a 7.8% share. Unit shipments were IBM, 869 million, Gateway, 847 million, and HP, 845 million.

Dataquest’s figures showed that the gap between the top five vendors and the rest of the pack continued to widen during the second quarter. These manufacturers saw their portion of the pie shrink from 50.2% in 1998 to 41.8%. However, these companies did increase their unit shipments to 4.18 million from 3.9 million.

IDC’s research had similar results with the “other” category holding 43.5% of the market in 1999, down from 49.3% during the second quarter last year.

Worldwide, Compaq’s margin over second-place Dell was wider, with the Dallas-based company commanding 13.8% of the market and Dell at 10.2% on shipments of 3.5 million and 2.58 million units shipped, respectively. IBM (8.8%), HP (6.3%) and Gateway (3.9%) filled out the remainder of the list, said Dataquest.

IDC’s worldwide numbers gave Compaq an even more comfortable lead, with a 14.6% market share — well above Dell’s 10.8%, IBM’s 9.2% and HP’s 6.6%.

Packard Bell NEC filled the fifth slot on IDC’s, list with 5.3% of the market.