Home market

Charlie Wolf: How the Mac roared back

December 1, 2009: 11:08 AM ET

Needham & Co.'s senior analyst explains how Apple outgrew the PC market seven fold

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Needham's Charlie Wolf was as surprised as anyone when Apple (AAPL) reported that it had sold a record 3.05 million Macintosh computers in its fiscal fourth quarter -- a 16.4% increase compared with just 2.3% growth in the PC market.

The estimate Wolf had filed -- 2.63 million units for the quarter -- was one of Wall Street's lowest. (See here.)

So he took a close look at how Apple did it, and on Tuesday in a detailed report to clients he offered his answer: the home market.

"The twin drivers of the Mac's rebound," he writes in his executive summary, "were the home market's continued share gains in the PC market and the Mac's share gains in the home market itself. Shipments in the worldwide home market increased 18.1% compared to an 11.5% decline in all other PC segments, while Mac shipments in the home market increased 28.8%. In the Western European home market, shipments rose an impressive 58.9%.

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