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Look out Surface Studio: Apple device shipments could outpace Windows’ in 2017

Microsoft unveiled a host of new and interesting products this year, but it looks like Apple might be poised to overtake the Windows juggernaut in 2017. This prediction comes courtesy of Gartner, the market research firm. According to Gartner, shipments of Windows devices will taper off gradually in 2017, leaving room for Apple’s MacOS and iOS devices to catch up to their Windows counterparts in 2017 and 2018. That may be good news for Apple, but according to Computer World, it isn’t good news for the market as a whole.

The sales numbers quoted by Computer World illustrate that Apple could likely catch up to and overtake Microsoft in total device sales in 2017, but it will be part of a larger downward trend for the global devices market.

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Gartner research analyst Ranjit Atwal stated unequivocally that the global market for mobile devices is “stagnating,” and that the “PC Market is just reaching the bottom of its decline.” It’s a pretty gloomy outlook for the global market as a whole, predicting a global decline and a period of stagnation from 2017 to at least 2019. Though there could be a silver lining, for one part of the world anyway. According to Gartner’s numbers, shipments of mobile devices are up in Asia, and throughout the Pacific region.

Microsoft will be hit hard by the sales slump, Gartner predicts, with most of its product lines dependent on the shipment of Windows 10. With PC sales down globally, Windows 10 just isn’t moving into as many hands as Microsoft would prefer, despite strong showings in late 2016 with the Surface Studio and upcoming Creators Update.

Apple, on the other hand, has a more diversified slate of products on its hands, and despite facing criticism for the frankly underwhelming MacBook Pro refresh, Apple mobile devices are likely to enjoy a slight uptick in 2016 and 2017. Gartner predicts Apple will ship 27 million more devices than Microsoft by 2019.