windows8-1Research firm IDC this afternoon released a new 2013 forecast for the global PC market, and the news isn’t good for Microsoft or other companies that rely on traditional computer sales to drive their businesses.

IDC’s new forecast shows PC shipments falling 9.7 percent for the full year of 2013. That’s down from the previous forecast of a 7.8 percent decline as of May, and the original expectation of a 1.3 percent decline as of March.

The firm cites slowing demand in developing nations, in addition to rising interest in tablets as alternatives to PCs. The implications are not good for Microsoft’s Windows 8.1, the update to the operating system that’s due out this fall.

“The days where one can assume tablet disruptions are purely a First World problem are over,” said IDC analyst Jay Chou in a news release. “Advances in PC hardware, such as improvements in the power efficiency of x86 processors remain encouraging, and Windows 8.1 is also expected to address a number of well-documented concerns. However, the current PC usage experience falls short of meeting changing usage patterns that are spreading through all regions, especially as tablet price and performance become ever more attractive.”

Starting in 2014, the firm says it sees “a slow rebound, driven in part by modest consumer refresh of systems whose lifecycle have dramatically lengthened in recent years, as well as businesses taking a first serious look beyond Windows 7.

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  • guest

    After the other shoe drops (MSFT’s Q1 numbers report in Oct.) it will become a lot clearer why Steve was shown the door.

  • Lorin Thwaits

    PC sales are plummeting largely because Windows 8 is such a disaster.

    Why can’t Microsoft just revert to a usable UI? Isn’t it easy to see that releasing something designed solely by artists is a complete mistake? What about functionality? The environment is pathetic, and 8.1 is on track to fix absolutely NOTHING about that.

    People never want to see the damned charms bar ever again. Or scroll endlessly through piles of tiles. And what happened to all the great features you could access through right-clicking? The experience is such a slap in the face for anyone trying to get real work done.

    • Justin Graham

      This is entirely untrue and not supported by evidence. The PC market was in steep decline prior to Windows 8 launching. The PC Market is declining due to disruption from Apple and Google in mobile and tablets, mostly in consumer.

  • Kevin McCarthy

    315,000,000 PC’s globally in 2013 is still a lot of friggin computers.

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