Apple has slid back substantially in US market share in the first three months of 2010, IDC said in a study. An early estimate says Apple's share shrunk from 7.4 percent this fall to 6.4 percent in the winter with about 1.13 million. The number was also a drop from 7 percent a year ago.
Some of the drop came through gains from Toshiba, which took over fourth place to reach 8.6 percent and 1.51 million PCs. The Acer Group, which includes eMachines and Gateway, also jumped to 13.1 percent with 2.3 million shipped, though some of that was likely at the expense of leaders HP and Dell. They held their first- and second-place spots at 25.4 percent (4.45 million PCs) and 24.1 percent (4.22 million PCs) respectively.
Worldwide, HP held on to the lead at 19.7 percent, but Acer took over from Dell at 13.6 percent of the market versus 13.3 percent. Lenovo was the fastest riser, jumping over a point to 8.8 percent, while Toshiba only grew slightly to 5.8 percent.
Analysts at IDC didn't attempt to explain Apple's drop but did note that Acer succeeded mostly because of its budget computer line and the sheer reach of its sales. Toshiba's US sales were helped by strong notebook sales in developing countries.
Apple may have been affected by a number of factors, including continuing drops in the average price of Windows PCs as well as customers waiting for updates to most of Apple's lineup, especially the MacBook Pro.