December 2016

Welcome to this month's IT Market Alert from KnowledgeBus. This alert is designed to deliver some key market knowledge viewed during November 2016 that should help you get more from your IT procurement going forwards.


Executive Summary



The largest number of price increases happened on November 1, with 36,685 rises in a single day.

Jump to Monthly Stats
  • Q3 smartphone sales to end users enjoy growth
  • Notebook shipments to continue falling YoY through 2017
  • DRAM prices, shipments and revenue up across the board

Chinese smartphones boost Q3 sales as Samsung and Apple record losses, PC shipments continue to fall but by decreasing margins, average DRAM prices and revenue continue to grow along with SSD’s adoption increasing at a rapid rate. This month the US president also blocked a Chinese takeover of German semiconductor manufacturer, display shipments are down but revenue is growing, and the European printer market sees mixed results.

It was also bad news for the euro this month, experiencing its poorest monthly performance against the GBP in seven years and falling hard against the USD.


Exchange Rate


After an initial rise it was all downhill for the euro against the GBP this month. Starting at 0.8991 and rising to 0.9029 on Nov 2, the euro then fell, first to 0.8893 on Nov 4 where it sat until Nov 9, down to 0.8602 by Nov 14 and bottoming out at 0.8478 on Nov 24. A slight recovery saw the euro end the month at 0.8516.

British Pound (GBP) per 1 Euro (EUR)


Similar against the USD, the euro started at 1.1002, rose to 1.1135 by Nov 6 and then fell, eventually reaching 1.0551 by Nov 23. A hint of a recovery followed ending the month at 1.0627.

An uncertain political situation in the Eurozone has gone against the single currency, and rumblings from the European Central Bank about further quantitative easing have led to a nervous market.



Euro (EUR) per 1 British Pound (GBP)


US Dollar (USD) per 1 British Pound (GBP)



Price Changes


Price Changes and News Through November, 2016

Phones and Tablets

Global smartphone sales to end users grew 5.4% YoY in Q3 to reach 373m units. Chinese vendors Huawei, Oppo and BBK were the only companies to increase sales for the quarter, said Gartner, adding that they accounted for 21% of all smartphones sales.

Samsung suffered its biggest ever smartphone sales decline in Q3 thanks to its disaster with exploding Galaxy Note 7 devices, dropping 14.2% YoY. Despite this, Samsung still maintained top spot with 71.7m units and 19.2% market share, followed by Apple with 43m units (down from 46m) and 11.5% market share, and the three Chinese vendors.

Android maintained its operating system dominance with 3.1% YoY growth in market share to account for 87.8% of all smartphone units sold.

IDC forecasts the global used and refurbished smartphone market will rapidly expand on the back of trade-in and buy-back programs, with shipments set to grow at a CAGR of 22.3% from 81.3m units in 2015 to 222.6m units by 2020.

According to IDC, tablet shipments to the Western Europe market fell 5.7% YoY in Q3 to 8.2m units. Apple and Samsung led the market, despite both posting shipment losses, while Lenovo, Acer and Amazon each enjoyed growth in third, fourth and fifth places respectively. TrendForce suggests that global tablet shipments will have fallen by 8.3% in 2016 to 154.5m units. It will decline at a shallower 5.3% YoY in 2017 to 146.5m units, the firm predicted.

Traditional PCs

TrendForce predicts global notebook shipments will fall 4% YoY in 2016 to 157.9m units and another 4.5% YoY in 2017. This year’s losses are caused by the component market’s rising prices and supply shortages, while 2017’s drop will be due be due to LCD panel market’s structural supply shortage.

HP will own the top spot in both 2016 and 2017 with 22.2% and 22.6% market share, respectively, while Lenovo will sit in second with 21.5% and 21.2% and Dell in third with 15.1% and 14.6%.

Meanwhile, IDC predicts that 2016 global PC shipments will fall 6.4% YoY to 258.2m units, and are set to fall another 2.1% YoY in 2017. Of the 2016 shipments, desktops will total 103.5m units and notebooks 154.7m units. The report also suggests PC shipments will fall to 250m units in total by 2020. Desktops will drop to 93.1m units while notebooks will increase to 156.9m units, it said.

Premium Ultramobiles/Wearables

IDC said western European detachable/hybrid tablet shipments enjoyed a 48.4% YoY shipment during the third quarter. They accounted for 21.9% of the tablet market, up from 13.8% in Q315.

Processors, MEMs, Semiconductors

Following an announcement by Apple that it would be cutting production orders for the iPhone 7, stock prices tumbled for major chip makers Broadcom (-4.5%), Cirrus Logic (-10.3%) and Qualcomm (-5.8%).


According to a variety of TrendForce reports, PC DRAM contract prices enjoyed 20% growth between September ($14.50) and October ($17.50) along with spot prices up 17% for DDR3 4Gb and 24% for DDR4 4Gb on the month. NAND Flash also rose 19.6% sequentially in Q3, mobile DRAM revenue enjoyed 16.8% growth sequentially in Q3 to $4.59b, while PC DRAM is set to experience 15% quarterly growth in Q1 2017.


SSDs will experience their largest sequential price increase for 2016 in Q4 and enjoy further growth through Q1 2017. TrendForce predicts average SSD contract prices to increase 6-10% during Q4 with growth coming on the back of a rapid increase in SSD sales into the notebook market, set to reach over 30%.


According to TrendForce, global shipments of large-size LCD panels fell 2.4% on the month in October. Looking forward, Witsview (TrendForce) also suggests global notebook and tablet panel shipments of large size LCD (7inch+) panels will fall 2.4% YoY to 725m units in 2017, while large monitors and TV sets will enjoy 3.8% YoY growth.

Meanwhile, IHS suggests flat panel display revenue will enjoy a 9.3% YoY growth in 2017 to $110b, ending a two-year revenue decline streak. Unit demand won’t increase, but panel prices will rebound and an increase in premium display products will help drive the growth. In another report IHS has forecast lower shipments by LCD panel makers in 2017, set to be down 1.2% YoY to 258.4m units.


Western European printer and multifunction shipments fell 1.5% YoY in Q3 to 5.3m units while the laser market enjoyed 1.9% YoY growth. Combined, revenues were on the up, with the printer market enjoying 3% YoY growth. In the UK however, units shipped performed poorly, falling 5.3% YoY, IDC reported.

Global shipments of 3D printers that produce metal parts enjoyed 17% YoY growth for 1H 2016 Context reported, noting 2H 2016 will be slower with just 12% shipment increase YoY.


Monthly Stats


New products started high at 36 but fell immediately, hitting as low as 2 by Nov 7. After rising to the monthly high of 46 on Nov 8, new products fell again, reaching 3 on Nov 10. A recovery to 17 the next day led to a rise to 45 on Nov 16. The rest of the month ended at 25 on Nov 30.

HP dominated price increases by manufacturer as Cisco did for price reductions.

Total price increases per day started high (36,685) but ended low, with a series of dramatic rises and falls in-between. Dropping to 4,264 by Nov 3, rising to 10,939 on Nov 4-6, dropping to 3,435 on Nov 8, jumping to 23,332 on Nov 10 before hitting a low of 2,998 on Nov 11-13. Less dramatic movements saw out the month, ending at 5,300.

Daily price decreases started at 9,680, rose to 13,415 on Nov 2 and again to 17,758 on Nov 4-6. It was relatively stable until it jumped to its monthly high of 27,123 on Nov 14. Price decreases to below 10,000 on Nov 16 were followed by three days of recovery. This was the theme for the rest of the month, until it ended down at 7,876.

Stock up spent most the month between 2,400-3,400, with some notable exceptions. It jumped from 2,870 on Nov 6 to 29,043 on Nov 7, fell to 934 on Nov 8, hit the month high 36625 on Nov 9, fell back to 20,841 on Nov 11-13 and to 2,453 by Nov 15. The rest of the month was mostly low and stable, before a sharp increase to 30,511 on Nov 30.

Stock decreases started at 9,765, rose to 26,819 by Nov 4-6, fell to 699 on Nov 7, hit the month high 43,168 on Nov 8 and then dropped again, sitting around 900 for most of the month but ending up at 18,427 on the last day of the month.

New Products November 2016


Prices and Stock Movements November 2016