The MacBook outgrew most of the PC market in the fourth quarter of 2021

2021 Macbook Pro Back
2021 Macbook Pro Back (Image credit: Bryan M. Wolfe / iMore)

What you need to know

  • The MacBook business grew by 11% year over year in the fourth quarter of 2021.
  • Apple reportedly shipped 6.6 million MacBooks in the quarter.
  • That put the company behind only Dell, which grew by 14%.

The Mac is outpacing most Windows-based PC vendors when it comes to growth in the fourth quarter of 2021.

In a new report from Strategy Analytics, Apple experienced record-breaking growth for the Mac in the fourth quarter of 2021. The company shipped 6.6 million MacBooks, a growth of 11% year over year compared to the fourth quarter of 2020.

Apple was the fastest-growing PC vendor only behind Dell, which grew 14% year over year. Chirag Upadhyay, Industry Analyst, said that the entire laptop market experienced another strong quarter due to the continued increase of companies adopting a hybrid work environment.

"This was another strong quarter for notebooks, capping an end to another strong year. The continued demand of hybrid work environment supported the developed market's growth which was also driven by Window 11 and DaaS attractive price offerings. Emerging markets are driven by continued demand from small and medium businesses whilst consumers continue to shift towards mobility. Also, delayed orders from Q3 2021 due to component shortage and supply issues were fulfilled in the fourth quarter."

Eric Smith, Director – Connected Computing, said noted that Windows overtook Chromebooks in terms of growth in the most recent quarter.

"As we witnessed a slowdown in Chromebook demand in the second half of 2021, Windows demand took off in Q4 2021. Windows 11 enterprise upgrades gave Windows notebooks strong momentum during the quarter across all regions. Microsoft also attracted top PC vendors with the recently launched Window 11 SE for K-8 education, targeting the surge in Chrome market share during the pandemic. Windows also remained the popular choice for consumers as gaming notebook PC demand continued during holiday season."

Apple credits the recent growth of the Macbook lineup to the release of the M1 family of Apple silicon processors as well as the MacBook Pro redesign that was released this fall.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.