Research company IDC reports New Zealand PC sales fell 27 percent in the first quarter of 2013 when compared to the same quarter a year earlier.

In a press release IDC describes this as ‘softness in PC sales’. That’s putting it mildly, we’re seeing a collapse. People are either skipping or delaying PC upgrades preferring instead to buy tablets or smartphones.

Understandably PC makers are cutting the supply of machines. This may lead in turn to less choice and difficulty getting hold of popular models.

IDC says Apple picked up market share in New Zealand during the quarter. It isn’t hard to see why, the company continues to offer more attractive computers and there’s a knock-on effect from Apple’s success with the iPhone and iPad.

In my view PC sales peaked some years ago and are unlikely to recover. There is no innovation waiting in the wings to kick-start a revival.

On the other hand, advances like the 12-hour battery life in Apple’s new MacBook Air will help slow the decline. I suspect traditional PCs will continue to sell for a while, just not in large numbers.

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