Global sales of personal computers reached 85.2 million units in the second quarter of 2011, a 2.3 percent increase from the same period last year according to a recent report from Gartner.

While the numbers were up over 2010, they were below Gartner's earlier projection for 6.7 percent growth. Gartner sales figures include desk-based PCs, mobile PCs, including mini-notebooks but not media tablet such as the iPad.

"After strong growth in shipments of consumer PCs for four years, driven by strong demand for mini-notebooks and low-priced consumer notebooks, the market is shifting to modest, but steady growth, said Mikako Kitagawa, principal analyst at Gartner.

The top seller in the quarter was Hewlett Packard which garnered at 17.5% market share by selling 14.9 million units. Dell moved into second place in the worldwide PC market for the first time since the fourth quarter of 2008 by selling 10.6 million units and grabbing a 12.5% share. Rounding out the top five were Lenovo (10.2 million), Acer (9.3 million) and Asus (4.5 million).

The U.S. was a source of considerable weakness in the second quarter of 2011 with sales of 16.9 million off 5.6% over the same period a year earlier. Gartner says the decline was due to a weak consumer PC market.

"Given the hype around media tablets such as the iPad, retailers were very conservative in placing orders for PCs. Instead, they wanted to secure space for media tablets." Ms. Kitagawa said.

Previously Gartner analysts predicted tablet sales of 70 million this year and PC sales of 388 million units.

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