Worldwide shipments of PCs have slumped by over 13 per cent in the first quarter of 2013, according to the International Data Corporation’s (ICD) Worldwide Quarterly PC Tracker report.

The decline far outstrips the projected 7.7 per cent slump, with the contraction marking the worst quarterly decline since the IDC began racking the PC market in 1994. 

Despite some isolated improvement, PC shipments were down across all global regions compared to a year ago.

The IDC concluded that fading mini notebook shipments have ‘taken a big chunk out of the low-end market’, while tablets and smartphones have outflanked spending elsewhere.

"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 Bob O'Donnell, IDC Program Vice President, Clients and Displays.

"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."

Ongoing restructuring of PC giants HP and Dell have also impacted on demand in the mid to high end of the market.

Shipments to the Asia-Pacific region slumped by 12.7 per cent year on year, the first time the region has ever experience d a double-digit decline, driven in part by the ‘lukewarm’ reception toward Windows 8.