September 2018

Welcome to this month's IT Market Alert from the IT Edition of KnowledgeBus. This alert is designed to deliver some key market knowledge viewed during August 2018 that should help you get more from your IT procurement going forwards.


Executive Summary

  • Smartphone sales back on track
  • Notebook shipments post growth
  • LCD panel shipments are down but expected bounce back


The largest number of price increases happened on August 7th, with 35,236.

Jump to Monthly Stats

Reports this month showed the IT channel was still mixed. Smartphones sales are positive as tablet shipments continue to slide, wearable shipments are up, PCs are down, semiconductor revenue continues to reach record growth, DRAM revenue is up, demand for large panels is rising and 3D printer spending is expected to boom.


Exchange Rate

What started strong and looked positive ended flat for the euro against the GBP in August. Starting at 0.8899 and holding steady until Aug 5 where it jumped to 0.8999 by Aug 9, the euro then fell before gradually climbing from 0.8931 on Aug 11 to a high of 0.9075 on Aug 28, only to fall back down to 0.8961 on Aug 31.

British Pound (GBP) per 1 Euro (EUR)

The euro started poorly against the USD, dropping from 1.1676 on August 1 to 1.1555 by Aug 6, and after a quick rise to 1.1605 on Aug 8, it fell hard, eventually hitting a low of 1.1332 by Aug 15. The euro then rose strongly, reaching to a high of 1.1694 on Aug 28, only to end the month back down at 1.1640.

US Dollar (USD) per 1 Euro (EUR)

Euro (EUR) per 1 British Pound (GBP)

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

According to the Financial Times, inflation in the eurozone slowed to 2% in August, down from 2.1% in July but still above the ECB’s target of just under 2% thanks to rising oil prices. Unemployment remained stable at 8.2%, the lowest since November 2008. IHS noted PMI dipped to 54.6 in August from 55.1 in July.

Price Changes and News Through August 2018


Phones and Tablets

According to Gartner, global smartphone sales grew 2% YoY in Q2 to 374.33m. Despite dropping 12.7% in sales, Samsung help top spot with 72.33m units and 19.3% market share, followed by Huawei in second with +38.6% YoY growth to 49.84m units and 13.3% of the market. Apple (44.71m and 11.9% market), Xiaomi (32.82m and 8.8%) and Oppo (28.51m and 7.6%) rounded out the top five vendors.

Android maintained its dominance with 329.5m units and 88% of the market in Q2, with Apple’s iOS in second at 11.9% of the market and 44.71m units.

TrendForce said global smartphone shipments grew 3% on the quarter in Q2 to 352m units and forecast 6% growth in Q3 to 373m units.

In other news, IDC reported that Chinese smartphone shipments fell 6% YoY but value grew 15% YoY in Q2, while Apple is said to making a budget iPhone to better compete with Android.

Meanwhile, tablet shipments fell 13.5% YoY in Q2 to 33m units. According to the IDC report, Apple topped the list with 11.5m units and 34.9% of the market, up 0.9% YoY, followed by Samsung (-16.1% to 5m units and 15.1% of the market), Huawei (+7.7% to 3.4m & 10.3%), Lenovo (-8.4% to 2m & 6%) and Amazon (-33.5% to 1.6m and 4.9%). Slate tablets dominated the market with 28.4m units.

In Western Europe, tablet shipments were down 10.1% YoY to 6.3m units in Q2, IDC said, with Apple (+2% to 1.94m units & 30.7% market share) topping the list ahead of Samsung (-14.2% to 1.41m), Huawei (+110.3% to 0.57m), Lenovo (-23.4% to 0.48m) and Amazon (-8.6% to 0.28m).

Traditional PCs

Global personal computer devices including PCs, tablets and workstations will fall 3.9% YoY in 2018, and continue to fall 1.5% to 383.6m units by 2022. IDC said traditional PCs are expected to fall from 356.7m units in 2018 to 249.5m units in 2022, while tablets will drop from 150.3m in 2018 to 134.1m units in 2022. Detachable tablets and notebooks within those segments will grow 8.7% to 31.4m and 0.4% to 165m units, respectively.

According to TrendForce, global notebook shipments are up 10.2% QoQ in Q2 quarter and 2.1% YoY to 41.08m units. HP topped the vendor list with 26.2% of the market, followed by Lenovo (20%), Dell (19.6%), Acer (8%) and Asus (7.4%). Looking ahead, TrendForce expects notebooks to enjoy 5-6% growth in Q3.

Premium Ultramobiles & Wearables

Global wearables grew 5.5% YoY to 27.9m units in Q2, IDC reported, with the value of the market also up 8.3% YoY to $4.8bn. Apple topped the list with 4.7m shipments, up 38.4% and 17% market share, followed by Xiaomi (+19.8% to 4.2m and 15.1%), Fitbit (-21.7% to 2.7m units and 9.5%), Huawei (+118.1% to 1.8m units and 6.5%) and Garmin (+4.1% to 1.5m units and 5.3% market share).

Processors, MEMs, Semiconductors

According to IHS, global semiconductor revenue reached $120.8bn in Q2. Samsung led the market ahead of Intel, SK Hynix, Micron and Broadcom with 33.7% YoY and 3.4% QoQ growth to $14.38bn.

The SIA noted global semiconductor sales for July reached $39.5bn, up 17.4% YoY and 0.4% on June. Europe alone enjoyed 11.7% YoY but fell 2.4% on June.


Global DRAM revenue in Q2 grew 11.3% on the quarter to $25.69bn, TrendForce reported. Samsung dominated the market with 43.6% market share, ahead of SK Hynix, Micron Group, Nanya and Winbond.


Samsung has begun mass producing 4TB SSDS, PCMag reported, in an effort to slash the price.


IHS said global demand for 60”+ TV panels will see shipments grow 19% to 54m units in 2025, up from 20m in 2018.

TrendForce on the other hand said global LCD TV panel shipments fell 3.87% YoY to 47.75m units in Q2. Despite this, the market is expected to bounce back, with annual shipments to grow 2.3% YoY to 215.7m units.

Meanwhile flexible AMOLED panels in smartphones will grow to comprise over 52% of all smartphone AMOLED panels shipped by 2020, IHS said, up from 38.9% in 2018.


Western Europe’s printer market fell 5.8% YoY in Q2 and 3.6% YoY 1H to 4.4m units. In the UK alone, IDC said shipments fell 4.6% to 0.78m units.

Global printer shipments enjoyed 0.9% YoY growth to 23.5m units in Q2. According to the IDC report, HP led the market with +3.5% to 9.58m units and 40.8% of the market, followed by Canon, Epson, Brother and Xerox.

Meanwhile, IDC said global spending on 3D printing would grow from $14bn in 2019 to $23bn by 2020.


Monthly Stats

New products started at 1, rose to 16 by Aug 3-5, jumped to 142 on Aug 13, fell back to 4 on Aug 15, recovered, rose to 372 and fell back to 4 by Aug 21. After jumping from 25 to 994 on Aug 24-26 and on to a high of 3,702 by Aug 27, new produced crashed back to zero on Aug 28 before rising to end the month back up at 1,953.

HP and QNAP topped both price increase and price reductions by manufacturer.

Total price increases per day highlights included starting at 22,981, dropping, hitting a high of 32,510 by Aug 9, a low of 783 on Aug 28 and ending the month back where it started, at 22,984.

Price decreases per day started at 12,418, rose to 188,00 on August 2, dropped to 10,621 on August 3-5 and 5,256 by Aug 9, before jumping to a high of 26,266 on Aug 17-19. Prices then fell to a low of 304 by Aug 29 before rebounded to 20,002 on Aug 31.

Stock up highlights included a rise from 3,675 on Aug 1 to a high of 29,935 by Aug 6, falling and holding steady, dropping to 648 by Aug 28 and hitting 7,490 by Aug 31.

Highlights for stock down this month included starting and holding steady around 13,780 before jumping to 35,236 on Aug 7, dropping to 5,327 on Aug 24-26 and again to 2,252 by Aug 28, before ending the month up at 15,820.

New Products August 2018

Prices and Stock Movements August 2018