February 2018

January proved a mixed month for the IT channel with global smartphones, tablets and PC shipments all reporting negative figures while semiconductor revenue, NAND contact prices, panel shipments and 3D printers reported positive. Even the euro experienced polar opposites this month.


Executive Summary

  • Global smartphone shipments are down
  • Gaming monitor shipments grew 80% YoY
  • 3D printer shipments enjoy industry-wide growth


The largest number of price increases happened on January 12th tot he 1414, with 36,817.

Jump to Monthly Stats

January proved a mixed month for the IT channel with global smartphones, tablets and PC shipments all reporting negative figures while semiconductor revenue, NAND contact prices, panel shipments and 3D printers reported positive. Even the euro experienced polar opposites this month.


Exchange Rate

Starting out at 0.8880, the euro saw a minor dip to 0.8818 on Jan 9 and then held steady against the GBP until Jan 16 (0.8896). Afterwards, it all went downhill, falling to 0.8726 by Jan 25. After a slight jump, it eventually ended the month down at 0.8769.

British Pound (GBP) per 1 Euro (EUR)

Against the dollar, the euro started at 1.2000, rose slightly and then fell to 1.1942 by Jan 9 before gradually rising for the rest of the month. It hit 1.2247 by Jan 16, 1.2430 by Jan 25 and ended the month up at 1.2394.

US Dollar (USD) per 1 Euro (EUR)

Euro (EUR) per 1 British Pound (GBP)

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

Both CNBC and The Independent reported the eurozone expanded 0.6% in Q4 QoQ and took 2017 GDP up 2.5%, the best performance in a decade. It also performed 0.2% better than the US and 0.9% better than the UK.

The Guardian on the other hand said the eurozone’s PMI in January sipped to 59.6 from December’s 60.6 on the back of drops in Germany and France. It also noted Greece hit a 123-month high of 55.2, Italy recorded an 83-month high of 59, and the Netherlands reached a record high of 62.5.

Price Changes and News Through October, 2017


Phones and Tablets

According to IDC, global smartphone shipments dropped 6.3% YoY in Q4 to 403.5m units, further taking annual shipments down 0.1% to 1.472bn units. By vendor, Apple took Q4 top spot with 77.3m units and 19.2% market share, down -1.3% YoY, followed by Samsung (-4.4% to 74.1m and 18.4%), Huawei (-9.7% to 41m and 10.2%), Xiaomi (+96.9% to 28.1m and 7%) and OPPO (-13.2% to 27.4m and 6.8%).

In other news, improvements in fingerprint sensors and a continued focus by Android devices will see smartphones with fingerprints increase to 60% market saturation, TrendForce reported.

Meanwhile, IDC said global detachable tablets grew 10.3% YoY to 6.5m units in Q4 but just 1.7% YoY for the year. When incorporating slate tablets, the Q4 global tablet market dropped 7.9% to 49.6m units shipped, with Apple, Amazon, Samsung, Huawei and Lenovo taking out the top five vendor spots.

Traditional PCs

According to Gartner, global PC shipments dropped 2% YoY to 71.55m units in Q4 and fell 2.8% YoY to 262.5m units for the year. HP led Q4 with 16.07m units and 22.5% market share, up 6.6% YoY, followed by Lenovo (-0.7% to 15.74m), Dell (+0.7% to 10.84m), Apple (+1.4% to 5.44m) and Asus (-11.3% to 4.73m units).

Vendors ranked in the same order for shipments over the entire year. HP boasted 4.6% YoY growth to 55.16m units shipped and 21% market share, followed by Lenovo (-2.2% to 54.71m), Dell (+1.1% to 39.87m), Apple (+4.1% to 19.29m) and Asus (-12.3% to 17.96m units)

In another report, Gartner found global device shipments incorporating PCs, tablets and mobile phones reached 2.278bn units in 2017, down 1.02% YoY. They are expected to bounce back 2.1% YoY in 2018 to 2.326bn. Traditional PC shipments dropped from 220m units in 2016 to 204m in 2017. They are expected to fall another 5.4% YoY to 193m in 2018 and further to 187m in 2019.

Premium Ultramobiles/Wearables

Gartner says premium ultramobile shipments grew from 50m units in 2016 to 59m in 2017 and expects to continue to 70m in 2018 and 80m in 2019.

Smart footwear is expected to be a new focus of the consumer and enterprise market, particularly in healthcare, transportation and warehousing industries. ABI Research forecasted shipments to rise from under 1m units in 2017 to 9m by 2022.

Global VR device shipments will grow from 3.7m units in 2017 to 5m units in 2018, TrendForce reported, with Sony to continue its lead over Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.

Processors, MEMs, Semiconductors

According to Gartner, global semiconductor revenue will increase 7.5% YoY in 2018 to $451bn.

In another report, Gartner noted Samsung and Apple were the biggest semiconductor customers in 2017, accounting for 19.5% of the global market and consuming $81.8bn. The top five vendors remained in the same order in 2016 and 2017, with Samsung up +37.2% YoY to $43.10bn and 10.3% market share, leading Apple (+27.5% to 38.75bn) Dell (+15.9% to 15.7bn), Lenovo (+9.6% to $14.67bn) and Huawei (+32.1% to $14.25bn).


TrendForce released a number of reports on DRAM this month, noting Q1 mobile DRAM prices will increase just 3% QoQ due to weak demand. Q1 server DRAM prices will be up 3-5% QoQ due to continuing tight supply. Intel and Micron Technology’s recent announcement of a split over NAND flash development won’t influence their product roadmaps until 2020 due to current 96-layer 3D-NAND flash product production not hitting the market until 2019.


Samsung has announced its new 800GB Z-SSD targeted towards handling AI, big data and IoT applications. The new SSD boasts high performance with write speeds up to 170k, increased reliability promising 42 petabytes and lower write latency to 16 microseconds.

Meanwhile, Forbes reported on Western Digital’s fiscal Q2 2018 earnings, forecasting +9% net revenue to $5.3bn and a 51% increase in capacity shipments to data centers and enterprise storage to 40 exabytes.


According to TrendForce, gaming monitor shipments grew 80% YoY to 2.5m units in 2017 and are expected to reach up to 3.7m units in 2018 on the back of the expanding video game market. ASUS leads the market ahead of Acer, BenQ, Philips and Samsung.

Global LCD TV panel shipments grew 1.3% YoY in 2017, growing each quarter to reach 263.83m units for the year. Looking ahead, TrendForce predicts shipments will increase 2.2% in 2018 to 269.49m units.

In breaking down segments, TrendForce noted LG not only led the market with 50.85m units (down 3.9% YoY) but saw 65” panels grow 38.5% YoY and 75” panels up 132.7% YoY. BOE claimed second with 43.64m units, up 0.4%, ahead of Innolux (+0.2% to 41.79m), Samsung (-15.4% to 39.59m) and China Star (+16.8% to 38.94m).

In other news, IHS says 98% of all 60”+ displays shipped in 2018 will be UHD. 2018 will also be the year of the 8K TV with mass production to hit the market and claim 1% of all 60”+ panels shipped, and grow to 9% in 2019.

IHS also noted OLED TVs grew 133% YoY to 270,000 units in November 2017, as LCDs fell 1.6% on the month to 24.4m units. In another report IHS said demand for LCD TV panels will fall 3% in Q1 on the quarter but up 1% YoY


According to Context, both the industrial/professional (2%) and personal/desktop (45%) 3D printer markets achieved global unit volume growth over the first three quarters of 2017.

IDC says global spending on 3D printing will grow 19.9% YoY in 2018 to nearly $12bn and continue to grow to nearly $20bn by 2021.


Monthly Stats

New products started the year at 37 and dropped to a low of 3 before recovering, holding steady at 20, jumping to 167 on Jan 17, falling back to 24 by Jan 19-21 and down to 9 by Jan 23, before hitting a high of 582 on Jan 26-27 and falling to end the month down at 7.

Zebra Technologies led price increase while Cisco led price reduction by manufacturer.

Price increases per day started at 21,570, dropped to 3,260 on Jan 2, jumped to 30,187 on Jan 5-7, fell, hit a high of 36,817 on Jan 12-14 and a low of 2,084 by Jan 19-21. A minor recovery was quickly dashed, eventually falling to 1,422 by Jan 31.

Total price decreases per day started at 26,827, fell to a low of 3,492 on Jan 2, bounced back and help steady, before jumping from 7,101 on Jan 12-14 to a high of 42,330 on Jan 16. Prices then fell to 13,384 from Jan 19-21, jumped to 35,909 on Jan 26-28, and eventually ended the month at 1,501.

Stock up fell from 2,709 to a low of 1,658 on Jan 2 before recovering and holding steady before jumping to a high of 7,579 on Jan 23 and ending the month back down at 2,487.

Stock down followed suit, falling from 8,124 to 1,413 on Jan 2, jumping to 14,000 by Jan 4 where it sat stable, hit a high of 16,954 on Jan 15, and continuing to hold steady before falling from 15,905 on Jan 30 to 8,904 on Jan 31.

New Products January 2018

Prices and Stock Movements January 2018