Just as we’re seeing in the desktop PC market, worldwide sales of PC monitors are down 2.2 year on year according to data from IDC, with a grand total of 30 million monitors sold during the past quarter. This is typical of the global market’s shift to laptops, tablets, and other mobile computing devices.
But just like desktop PC shipments, which have seen sales decline while sales of gaming hardware goes up, the sales of gaming focused PC monitors are bucking the trend. Data amassed by ITC suggests a growing number of PC gamers are choosing to adopt large-screen models and curved displays, with a growing emphasis on a premium PC gaming experience.
"Outside of Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan), the PC monitor market was otherwise healthy in the second quarter," said Jay Chou, research manager, PCDT. "Commercial replacements and upgrades into larger screens continue to drive the narrative, though the shift toward notebooks in the biggest region, Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan), and a slowdown in China has wrought some challenges."
The growth in curved monitor adoption is actually kind of huge. Sales of curved monitors have increased a massive 44.7% year on year in Q2 2019, indicating a surge in popularity for these luxury displays. The primary interest for curved displays comes from gamers, with the majority of these displays specifically designed for gaming purposes.
As it currently stands, 21.5” displays are still the most popular screen size sold, although 23.8” displays are expected to take the top spot by 2023. This probably comes down to a matter of price really, with larger displays now readily available at more affordable prices. Ideally, a 24” display should be the minimum you’re looking at for gaming purposes.
We’re also seeing a shift away from cheaper panel types as well. IPS displays now account for half of all monitors sold, while gamers are increasingly moving toward VA panels rather than cheaper TN displays. VA tends to offer better image quality when compared to TN, while IPS displays are now also available with high refresh rates up to 240Hz, making them a tempting proposition.
Has a higher quality gaming monitor become a top priority for you lately? Or do you think these figures just come from more and more people getting into PC gaming?