Canalys: Chromebooks lead PC revival in Q1 2021 with 275% growth

Shanghai (China), Bengaluru (India), Singapore, Reading (UK) and Portland (US) – Tuesday, 4 May 2021

The latest data from Canalys shows that the total worldwide PC market (including tablets) grew strongly for a fourth successive quarter, with shipments up 53.1% year on year at 122.1 million units. Chromebooks and tablets continued to excel as we entered 2021, posting 274.6% and 51.8% growth and achieving remarkable first-quarter shipment volumes of 12.0 million and 39.7 million units respectively.

Chromebook vendors have seen their businesses go from strength to strength, posting record first-quarter shipment numbers. HP topped the market yet again, with growth of 633.7% propelling it past the 4-million-unit mark. Lenovo took second place with 3.1 million units shipped, having ramped up production to help ease order backlogs from 2020. Acer, Samsung and Dell made up the rest of the top five, all shipping over 1 million units.

Worldwide Chromebook shipments (market share and annual growth)
Canalys PC Market Pulse Q1 2021

Vendor (company)

Q1 2021
shipments

Q1 2021
market share

Q1 2020
shipments

Q1 2020
market share

Annual
growth

HP

4,364

36.4%

595

18.6%

633.7%

Lenovo

3,108

25.9%

760

23.8%

308.8%

Acer

1,428

11.9%

514

16.1%

178.1%

Samsung

1,200

10.0%

51

1.6%

2233.0%

Dell

1,005

8.4%

503

15.7%

99.9%

Others

874

7.3%

775

24.2%

12.8%

Total

11,979

100.0%

3,198

100.0%

274.6%

Note: Unit shipments in thousands. Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.
Source: Canalys PC Analysis (sell-in shipments), May 2021

“Chromebooks are well and truly a mainstream computing product now,” said Brian Lynch, Canalys Research Analyst. “While the education sector still accounts for the majority of shipments, their popularity with consumers and traditional commercial customers has reached new heights over the course of the last year. HP and Lenovo dominate the Chromebook market, but the boom has been a case of a rising tide lifting all boats, allowing vendors such as Acer and Samsung to carve out substantial shares within the PC market by catering specifically to Chromebook demand. Google is now in a strong position to work with its OEM partners and the channel to cement a rosy future for Chromebooks. A substantial messaging and evangelization push coupled with the targeting of growth trends, such as flexible work arrangements and budget-conscious SMBs, will be vital to ensure the longevity of Chromebooks’ success.”

Almost all the top tablet vendors enjoyed continued shipment growth in Q1 2021. Apple extended its lead, growing 50.3% and shipping 15.2 million units as the latest iteration of the iPad Air gained traction with consumers. Samsung maintained second place with 8.0 million units shipped, posting growth of 59.9%. Lenovo and Amazon achieved the highest levels of shipment volume growth with 133.5% and 197.9% year on year respectively, primarily due to a low Q1 2020. Huawei, however, suffered a decline of 27.9%, primarily due to the breakaway of its former Honor brand into a separate entity. It still maintained a healthy lead over competitors to secure a top-five spot.

Worldwide tablet shipments (market share and annual growth)
Canalys PC Market Pulse Q1 2021

Vendor (company)

Q1 2021
shipments

Q1 2021
market share

Q1 2020
shipments

Q1 2020
market share

Annual
growth

Apple

15,187

38.2%

10,106

38.6%

50.3%

Samsung

8,000

20.1%

5,002

19.1%

59.9%

Lenovo

3,782

9.5%

1,159

6.2%

133.5%

Amazon

3,453

8.7%

1,620

4.4%

197.9%

Huawei

2,143

5.4%

2,974

11.4%

-27.9%

Others

7,159

18.0%

5,309

20.3%

34.9%

Total

39,724

100.0%

26,171

100.0%

51.8%

Note: Unit shipments in thousands. Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.
Source: Canalys PC Analysis (sell-in shipments), May 2021

“The tablet market continues to defy expectations with the strength of its comeback,” said Canalys Research Analyst Himani Mukka. “Even beyond the traditionally strong holiday season, vendors are seeing elevated demand as the need for affordable computing power and connectivity persists. At a time when the overall PC market is facing a supply crunch, the vendors that have strong tablet offerings have been able to squeeze out even greater gains from the increased demand for screen access and remote productivity brought about by the pandemic. Canalys expects this trend to develop as tablets become mainstays in growing sectors such as education as well as in wider commercial deployments to support digital transformation.”

Lenovo maintained its lead in the total PC market, which includes desktops, notebooks and tablets, shipping 24.0 million units and posting growth of 66.5%. Apple came second with 22.1 million shipments of Macs and iPads. HP secured third place with 19.3 million units and 64.2% growth, leaving Dell and Samsung to make up the rest of the top five.

Worldwide PC (including tablet) shipments (market share and annual growth)
Canalys PC Market Pulse Q1 2021

Vendor (company)

Q1 2021
shipments

Q1 2021
market share

Q1 2020
shipments

Q1 2020
market share

Annual
growth

Lenovo

24,044

19.7%

14,440

18.1%

66.5%

Apple

22,061

18.1%

13,325

16.7%

65.6%

HP

19,255

15.8%

11,726

14.7%

64.2%

Dell

13,016

10.7%

10,511

13.2%

23.8%

Samsung

9,745

8.0%

5,403

6.8%

80.4%

Others

33,996

27.8%

24,345

30.5%

39.6%

Total

122,117

100.0%

79,750

100.0%

53.1%

Note: percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.
Source: Canalys PC Analysis (sell-in shipments), May 2021

For more information, please contact:

Canalys China
Jason Low: jason_low@canalys.com +86 159 2128 2971
Nicole Peng: nicole_peng@canalys.com +86 150 2186 8330

Canalys India
Rushabh Doshi: rushabh_doshi@canalys.com +91 99728 54174
Jash Shah: jash_shah@canalys.com +91 74117 22710

Canalys Singapore
Ishan Dutt: ishan_dutt@canalys.com +65 8399 0487 
Himani Mukka: himani_mukka@canalys.com +65 8233 4730

Canalys UK
Ben Stanton: ben_stanton@canalys.com +44 7824 114 350
Kelly Wheeler: kelly_wheeler@canalys.com +44 7919 563 270

Canalys USA
Brian Lynch: brian_lynch@canalys.com +1 503 927 5489
Marcy Ryan: marcy_ryan@canalys.com +1 650 862 4299

About Canalys

Canalys is an independent analyst company that strives to guide clients on the future of the technology industry and to think beyond the business models of the past. We deliver smart market insights to IT, channel and service provider professionals around the world. We stake our reputation on the quality of our data, our innovative use of technology and our high level of customer service.

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 Canalys: Chromebooks lead PC revival in Q1 2021 with 275% growth

 


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