The upsurge in the adoption of education technologies (edtech) in Southern Africa lifted the personal computing device (PCD) market in the third quarter (Q3) of 2021, as demand reached record levels.
In the quarter, the PCD market recorded a year-on-year growth of 44.4%.
The latest quarterly PCD tracker from International Data Corporation (IDC) says shipments in the market reached over 920 000 in Q3 2021, the highest volume recorded in almost five years.
Southern African learners, like many across the world, had to resort to remote learning to keep up with the academic year, which IDC says prompted high demand for devices.
“A huge backlog of orders and rising adoption of education technologies to support online learning were the key commercial growth drivers, while retail sales spurred consumer growth. Demand remained high across the region but vendors were unable to fully meet it, so they prioritised the supply of devices to commercial end-users,” says Grace Munyi, a research analyst at IDC.
Munyi says despite the continued global stock supply challenges caused by a shortage of components and chipsets, the Southern Africa PCD market recorded a strong performance during the quarter.
In the PC category, IDC says, HP remains the dominant player in the Southern Africa market, accounting for 27.9% of total PC shipments in the quarter, up from 24.8% a year earlier.
During the same period, the IDC report says, local brand Proline moved up to second place with 18.8% share, a significant increase on the 1.3% share it gained in the third quarter the previous year.
“This strong performance by Proline was driven by the massive notebook volumes it delivered for phase two of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) education deal in South Africa,” says IDC.
The laptops were part of COVID-19 relief efforts by government to assist students during the lockdown period.
The NSFAS contract was expected to benefit 430 000 students in 26 universities and 300 000 students in 50 TVET colleges across the country. A total of 730 000 laptops were set to be procured.
Lenovo slipped from second to third in Q3 2021, with Dell falling to fourth place despite recording a slight year-on-year (YOY) increase in its share.
In the tablet category, IDC says, Samsung continued to dominate the market in the quarter. Apple moved up from third to second, while Lenovo went the other way after seeing its share decline by 4.1 percentage points.
Workstations recorded the market’s highest YOY growth, with shipments up 103.2% in Q3 2021. Notebook shipments increased 89.1% over the same period, while desktop shipments were up 65.2%.