Global notebook shipments are expected to decrease by 10.2% in 2023

Market research firm TrendForce has unveiled its latest forecast, projecting that global notebook shipments will reach 167 million units in 2023, marking a year-over-year decline of 10.2%. The market is anticipated to return to a healthy supply-demand cycle the following year, with the main growth drivers being a gradual release of pent-up demand in the business segment, along with an uptick in demand for certain Chromebooks and gaming/esports notebooks. Shipments are expected to climb to 172 million units, reflecting a year-over-year increase of 3.2%.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has become a hot topic within the industry, and Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger has expressed optimism about the future of AI PCs in a recent interview, predicting that the shipment volume of AI PCs could reach 100 million units within the next two years. Although AI PCs represent an emergent niche market without a clear definition at present, one can approach them from both software and hardware perspectives.

On the software front, Microsoft’s AI assistant Copilot, built on large language models (LLMs), has officially launched, requiring users to operate on the Windows 11 system. Moreover, Microsoft 365 enterprise users have the option to integrate AI processing capabilities. In terms of hardware, manufacturers are focusing on end devices with AI processing capabilities, such as the upcoming notebooks equipped with Meteor Lake, which commonly feature a neural acceleration engine combined with client AI applications. These no longer rely on cloud computing and can perform AI inference offline, setting the foundation for future AI PCs.

TrendForce believes that since AI PCs are still in the early stages of development, the upgrade costs for related software and hardware are relatively high. Their primary applications are concentrated among high-end business users and content creators, exchanging AI processing power for enhanced productivity efficiency. However, this might not necessarily stimulate additional demand, as in most cases, the transition to AI PCs will occur naturally during the replacement cycle of old machines.