Skip to main content

IDC: Consumers spend more on accessories than PCs

Image used with permission by copyright holder

A new survey from market analysis firm IDC finds that U.S. consumers, overall, spend more money on accessories for their PCs than they do on PCs themselves. IDC’s foruth annual Beyond-the-Box survey found that in 2009, consumers spend $1.05 on PC accessories and peripherals for every $1 they spend on PCs themselves. The findings highlight not only the diminishing costs of mainstream PCs, but how large the market is for add-ons, enhancements, and services that make PCs do what people want.

“This research is meant to shed some light on a substantial portion of the personal computing segment, the accessories market, which has not been adequately tracked in the past,” said IDC’s personal computing research director David Daoud, in a statement. “With the trend of a multi-PC per user environment, the accessories market will play a growing role in insuring seamless integration of all the devices in businesses and households. The need for solutions to enhance user experience, improve productivity, and secure users’ computing environment mean that the accessories market will continue to expand going forward. In its fourth year, this research provides strategic recommendations to manufacturers, distributors, and their partners.”

Overall, IDC forecasts the market for PC enhancements, accessories, and peripherals will top $28.6 billion in 2010. Leading PC add-ons include security and antispam software, but other popular accessories include additional memory and storage, as well as enhanced graphics options and media-creation software.

IDC also found that the PC accessories business is dominated by brick-and-mortar retailers, with Best Buy expanding its share of the U.S. market. However, IDC also finds consumers migrating swiftly towards Web-centric and cloud-based services and activities, which means retailers may need to change their strategy if they want to keep on top of consumers’ computing needs.

In the small business segment, IDC found spending patterns are quite a lot different than the consumer marketplace: where consumers on average now spend more on accessories than on PCs, small businesses only put about a quarter of their computer shopping budget towards “beyond the box” products and accessories, suggesting that business computing remains more purpose-specific, where consumers are applying their computers towards a broader range of activities.

Editors' Recommendations

Geoff Duncan
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Geoff Duncan writes, programs, edits, plays music, and delights in making software misbehave. He's probably the only member…
Are gaming PCs more expensive today? Here’s what $1,000 bought you 10 years ago
A close-up image of Nvidia's RTX 3080 Ti graphics card.

Say it with me: "Building a gaming PC is getting more expensive." Price is top of mind when building a gaming PC in 2022, and why wouldn't it be? Today, the best graphics cards will cost you well over $1,000, DDR5 is ungodly expensive, and CPU prices are double or even triple what they were a decade ago.

It's easy to add up the numbers and come to a conclusion, but that ignores game optimizations, falling prices of other components, and the various upscaling tools players have to squeeze extra performance out of their PCs. Instead of adding up what you could spend on a gaming PC, I added up what you would spend.

Read more
Six-year-old AMD GPU smokes Nvidia’s new GTX 1630 by more than double
MSI's custom GTX 1630 graphics card.

Nvidia quietly released the GTX 1630 on Tuesday, following a reported delay at the end of May. The card, which is around $150 and built on the older Turing architecture, won't be making it into our roundup of the best graphics cards, though. Early reviews show that even the six-year old RX 470 beats the GTX 1630 by as much as 52%.

It's a dire situation for Nvidia's new GPU. Guru3D's review of the Palit GTX 1630 4GB Dual showed that the card sits at the bottom in every benchmark. And that's not just against the latest graphics cards. In Far Cry 6, for example, the GTX 1630 was beaten by Nvidia's GTX 1650 Super by a massive 64% at 1080p. AMD's RX 470, which is twice as old as the GTX 1650 Super, won out by 52%.

Read more
Lenovo’s latest ThinkStation is smaller than an Xbox (and way more powerful)
Lenovo small form factor workstation.

Usually, the faster the PC, the more hot it gets and the bigger it is. But what if you could just have the components worthy of the best desktops in a case that's smaller than an Xbox Series X? That's exactly what Lenovo is doing with its ThinkStation P360 Ultra, which clocks in at just under 4 liters of volume.

That's almost 3 less liters than the Xbox Series X, and much, much smaller than the typical desktop, while also supporting up to a Core i9-12900K and an RTX A5000. With these specs, the P360 Ultra might be the fastest small form factor PC ever launched.

Read more