Mac sales falling, but falling less than PCs

Mac sales falling, but falling less than PCs

For Apple's fourth quarter for its fiscal year 2013, Mac sales were down year over year, but Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer says that the Mac is still doing better than - and gaining marketshare against - the PC. Mac sales saw a 7 percent drop year over year, but market research firm IDC reports that the PC market overall saw a 10 percent decline.

By the numbers, Apple reported sales of 4.57 million Macs for the quarter, a seven percent decline year over year. That contributed $5.62 billion to Apple's bottom line, a 15 percent decline year over year.

Lower Mac sales should have been expected for the quarter - the MacBook Air was last new Mac model to ship, and Apple began deliveries of that way back in June. New MacBook Pro and iMac models were only introduced in October.

Oppenheimer noted that Macs have continued to gain marketshare for 29 of the last 30 quarters (the one down quarter was the December 2012 quarter, when Apple delayed the release of new iMac models longer than it had originally anticipated). Despite the slowdown in Mac sales, Apple was able to keep its channel inventory under control - the company said that it exited the quarter with less than the four weeks of inventory available.

Were you waiting for new Macs to be introduced? Are you interested in the new MacBook Pro or a new iMac? Tell me in the comments.

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Peter Cohen

Mac Managing Editor of iMore and weekend Apple Product Professional at a local independent Apple reseller. Follow him on Twitter @flargh

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Reader comments

Mac sales falling, but falling less than PCs


Yep ... Apple is doomed!

In another news ... Wall Street fatties are going to jack up google and amazon's stock prices tomorrow morning .. AGAIN!

My wife immediately bought a MBP. I'm still was hoping for bumps in the mini line for some specific workstation and workgroup needs.

So is this a long term decline or will it stabilise at some point? Looking at my own needs - my 6 year old iMac is doing fine for now and I'll probably upgrade to a new iPad next year. But at some point I'll need to invest in a new Mac, at least to use as an iPad hub and occasional heavy lifting. Is this going to be typical of many users?

PC sales are in decline, quarter after quarter - many consumers are transitioning to tablets and other mobile devices. So if past is prologue, yes, this will continue.

Having said that, I don't think the Mac is in any danger of going away. Apple still makes billions on Mac sales from quarter to quarter, they're still broadly popular consumer and business machines. Not to mention that in order to develop for iOS, you need a Mac.

I am thinking of getting a new laptop but unsure whether to get Air or Pro even looking at last years models

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This decline, will I think settle down. Right now we are seeing those that would normally pay for a cheap P.O.S. Windows PC out of Walmart or Best Buy realise that a tablet would suit their needs far better since really most people only use their PC's for the obvious Facebook, Email etc. While the decline in the Mac sales will settle down quicker because far less people only use a Mac system for only Facebook or Email.


But I do think Apple bloggers need to stop comparing iMacs to PCs and start thinking why Apple has so many phones and tablets on the market, and cannot convince the gereral public that the iMac is the perfect combination for those. Is it a price problem, or a specs problem, or most people don't like all-in-ones, that is the real question here, and not "our sales are bad but theirs are worse".

After all, Apple has arguably the best marketing around, so what's happening to the mac?

I'm not sure it is a problem. Macs have been gaining marketshare over PC for some years (albeit slowly) and have a much stronger presence in consumer land than among the much bigger business/government/etc sectors (which skewiff the stats). Sure the price will put many people off, but Apple obviously believe they can make more money selling less computers with a higher margin. I don't like it, but I understand it.

I decided to buy a MacBook Pro retina earlier this year around May, but wanted to wait for the yearly product-line update. Was hoping it would arrive sometime during the summer, so this fall has been a long one. :) Bought a 15" MacBook Pro retina on Tuesday when Apple announced the update. Got it today, and I'm really happy with it. It's the first Mac I've ever owned. Already have an iPhone 5, iPad (4th gen.) and Apple TV (3rd gen.).

I really want to get an iMac, but several things are holding me back. Games aren't released as early, or if at all, on Macs. The GPU is laptop quality, and I'm afraid the display isn't 120hz. Besides, I'm guessing my new MBP would make the iMac display (which is a good display) look like crap now. ;)

I'll pick up my new iPad Air Friday or Saturday.

I need a new computer, too. But I can't seem to stick with a choice between the 13" MBA and the 15" MBP.

I'm thinking PCs and Macs are just for gamers and designers nowadays. Remember Black Friday laptops? People bought them just to email and surf the web. Now they can do all that on a tablet... and launch birds into fragile structures when they're done. I'd love a new iMac, but the one I have is still kicking after 3 years.

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I've got my new rMBP 13" (with haswell processor) as of last week. First Mac and it is sweet. No bloatware, local store to address any problems and just a buttery smooth OS.

I'd love a new Mac or MBP, but my four year old 15" MBP works as good today as the day I bought it.