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United States Personal Computer and Tablet Sales Will Resume Growth in 2017

October 8, 2016 Statistics & Trends No Comments Email Email

Daniel Research Group, a market research firm specializing in forecasting technology markets announces the publication of the United States Personal Device Forecast Report. The report is available on DRG‘s website,, or directly from this link: According DRG, sales of Personal Computing Devices (PCs and Tablets) to households and business will increase 2.3%, to 116.9 million units in 2017.

Market Overview
After several years of declining sales, demand for Personal Computing Devices will resume moderate growth in 2017. Growth will accelerate starting in 2018 resulting in a 7.8% five-year CAGR. Mobile Phone purchases will also resume moderate growth in 2018 however, lengthening replacement cycles will constrain growth in the near term resulting in essentially flat unit shipments through 2020.

United States Total Personal Device Unit Shipments (M)
2016 2017 AGR 2020 CAGR ’15-’20
Desktop PCs 18.1 18.1 0.0% 17.5 -2.9%
Mobile PCs 46.5 49.0 5.3% 58.7 5.4%
Total PCs 64.7 67.1 3.8% 76.1 3.1%
Detachable 8.1 12.0 46.9% 62.9 50.5%
Slate 41.5 37.8 -8.9% 27.6 -7.9%
Total Tablets 49.7 49.8 0.2% 90.5 12.7%
Total Personal Computers 114.3 116.9 2.3% 166.6 7.8%
Standard Phones 26.7 18.2 -31.7% 5.2 -29.2%
Smartphones 174.6 175.8 0.7% 197.3 2.5%
Total Mobile Phones 201.3 194.0 -3.6% 202.4 -0.1%
Total Personal Devices 315.7 311.0 -1.5% 369.1 2.8%
∞∫∆ Daniel Research Group © (2016)

According to Stephen Daniel, President of DRG, “The opportunity to migrate additional legacy and manual business processes in the enterprise sector, and life management tasks in the consumer sector, to Personal Computing and Communication Devices has never been greater. Over the next five year growth in enterprise mobility applications that specifically exploit the adaptability of current and anticipated Detachable Tablets will drive a significant portion of the market growth.”

“Households and business will add more new devices increasing densities. Additionally, both real and elected obsolescence will shorten replacement cycle lengths. Finally, both the number of households and business, as well as penetration rates will continue to increase. Absent any significant economic shocks, the near term future for this market looks bright.”

A New Personal Device Taxonomy
The device taxonomy used for the past 10 years – Desktop PCs, Mobile PCs, Tablets and Mobile Phones – is outdated and no longer useful. DRG believes that different categories, focused on location and primary purpose, more accurately reflect the natural segmentation of the United States Personal Device Market. The report presents forecast tables and charts using both the current and the new taxonomies.

Primary User Benefit Fixed Location Mobile
Content Creation Desktop PCs Mobile PCs

Detachable Tablets

Content Delivery Slate Tablets


Communication Mobile Phones

Average Device Age Over Time
DRG’s technology product and service forecasting approach relies heavily on understanding the long-term trends of key historical time-series, including the average age of the devices in use. Users accelerate replacing units when new competitive hardware or software products are introduced, and they are comfortable with economic conditions. They delay replacing devices when economic conditions worsen, or when there is no compelling reason to change.

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