Worldwide shipments of PCs have suffered the worst year-on-year decline since market research firm IDC started tracking shipments in 1994.
The IDC reported a total of 76.3 million PC shipments during the first three months of 2013, a 13.9 percent decline from the same period in 2012. The figure is almost double the predicted drop of 7.7 percent.
It is also the fourth consecutive quarter of year-on-year declines for PC shipments.
HP remains the top vendor of PC hardware, according to the IDC statistics, but has shipped over 23 percent fewer units year-on-year. Lenovo, Dell, Acer, and Asus round out the rest of the top five vendors, with Lenovo posting the best results by being the only manufacturer not to lose any of its market share year-on-year.
Sluggish uptake of Microsoft's Windows 8 was singled out as a reason for the poor numbers. "At this point, unfortunately, it seems clear that the Windows 8 launch not only failed to provide a positive boost to the PC market, but appears to have slowed the market," said IDC vice president Bob O'Donnell in a statement.
"While some consumers appreciate the new form factors and touch capabilities of Windows 8, the radical changes to the UI, removal of the familiar Start button, and the costs associated with touch have made PCs a less attractive alternative to dedicated tablets and other competitive devices."
"Microsoft will have to make some very tough decisions moving forward if it wants to help reinvigorate the PC market," concluded O'Donnell.