According to the latest figures from International Data Corporation, the shipments of detachable and convertible tablets recorded a 44.7 percent growth to rise to 18.2 percent of total consumer shipments and 21.9% of commercial devices in the first quarter of 2016, up from 9.2% and 16.3% respectively year-on-year. Overall, the European PC and tablet market declined by 13.7 percent in the first quarter of 2016 with the total shipments amounting to 18.2 million units.
In Western Europe, PC shipments declined by almost 12.9 percent, but the convertible PCs still reported a positive 12 percent growth. It appears consumers are looking for more flexibility when it comes to devices so they can use their device as a tablet when need and vice versa, making it easier to carry around especially for frequent travellers.
"Customers are looking for solutions that allow for flexibility," said Andrea Minonne, research analyst, IDC EMEA Personal Computing. "We want to access information, create content, or communicate without constraints. Addressing such market demand represents an opportunity for IT vendors. Convertible notebooks and detachables are the most suitable device to guarantee functionality and mobility at the same time. Both form factors have been well received in the market and have gained momentum across Western Europe. Interestingly, growth in convertible notebooks and detachables in the first quarter of 2016 was above average in Germany, Italy, and Switzerland."
As far as the operating system is concerned, Windows continues to dominate the PC and tablet market with over 50 percent share, but its performance was below average at least in the first quarter of 2016. Microsoft released their new Windows 10 operating system last year, which is available as a free upgrade for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 devices until July this year. Despite the awareness, the overall performance of the operating system, due to lower number of shipments isn't too pleasing -- Windows reported a negative growth of 10.6 percent in the first quarter of 2016 compared to the same quarter last year.