Indian PC market faces new disruption wave due to China lockdowns

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As China takes a strong stance on its Zero-Covid policy, implementing lockdowns in major manufacturing hubs across the country, supply disruptions in the PC market will occur and India is again expected to get the short end of the stick, according to a new report.

India’s PC market grew 45 per cent in 2021, with shipments of desktops, notebooks and tablets reaching 18.6 million units.

“While 2021 saw a huge jump in shipments, the same is not expected of 2022 in India, according to market research firm Canalys.

“We will see major corrections, especially in the consumer market, affecting notebooks and tablets,” said Jash Shah, research analyst.

But there will be stronger demand from SMBs and enterprise customers, as the number of Covid-19 cases falls, vaccination rates surge, and businesses and schools return to normal.

“Key themes will remain local production of PCs, important from a government orders fulfilment perspective, and commercial upgrades, which will be spurred by the return to offices and new policies around hybrid working,” Shah elaborated.

The threat, however, lies not in local demand, but in global supply.

“While this seems like a great year on paper, it is important to consider 2021 not just as a standalone year but in relation to 2020,” said Shah.

When the pandemic hit in 2020 and PC supplies were squeezed, vendors naturally prioritised western markets, such as the US and Western Europe, leaving markets like India with a reduced supply.

India’s PC shipments fell 3 per cent in 2020, creating a lot of pent-up demand, which was amplified due to the second Covid-19 wave in the first half of 2021, leading to the record growth that we’ve seen this year, Shah explained.

PC shipments in Q4 2021 reached a total of 5.3 million units, up 46 per cent on Q4 2020.

Notebooks grew 40 per cent to reach 3.3 million shipments, while desktop shipments were up 70 per cent year on year to surpass 700,000 units for the first time in eight quarters.

Most of this growth is due to companies such as Lenovo and Samsung, which have increased their ability to fulfil orders by manufacturing locally.

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