Sales were largely driven by demand for Windows 10 upgrades as support for Windows 7 comes to an end.
IDC states that worldwide PC shipments grew by 2.7 percent up to 266.7 million devices. All three showed excellent gains for the quarter, with Dell's unit sales climbing by almost 11 percent, according to IDC's estimates.
"This past year was a wild one in the PC world, which resulted in impressive market growth that ultimately ended seven consecutive years of market contraction", said Ryan Reith, Program Vice President with IDC's Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers.
For all of 2019, Apple's worldwide Mac shipments were down 0.9 percent, with Apple shipping an estimated 18.4 million Macs during the year compared to 18.5 million in 2018. IDC counts desktops, notebooks (including Chromebooks) and workstations, but not tablets or x86 Servers.
Gartner reported that two opposing factors affected PC sales: On one hand, the end of support for Windows 7 prompted businesses to invest in new hardware, giving new PC sales a shot in the arm.
As ZDNet's Ed Bott noted, there are an estimated 1.2 billion Windows PCs in use around the world, with somewhere around a billion running Windows 10. Most likely a temporary one, since PC makers benefitted previous year from the pending retirement of Windows 7, which triggered the small rebound.
"The market will still have its challenges ahead, but this year was a clear sign that PC demand is still there despite the continued insurgence of emerging form factors and the demand for mobile computing". IDC said that the adoption of AMD CPUs provided some relief to the problem.
Lenovo was the top PC vendor with 17.5 million shipments and 24.8 percent market share, followed by HP with 16.1 million shipments and 22.8 percent market share and Dell with 12.1 million PCs shipped and 17.2 percent market share.
With the exception of the Asia/Pacific, Lenovo recorded year-over-year growth in all regions.
HP experienced its third quarter in a row of year-over-year shipment growth, and kept its top position in the US, EMEA and Latin America.
Dell's shipments grew year-over-year in all regions at a much higher rate compared with the regional average, due in large part to its particularly strong desktop PC growth.
Apple's Mac sales in Q4 declined 5.3 percent year-over-year, according to IDC.
The report continues with an estimation of 2019's shipment totals, also showing a decline for Apple in both growth and marketshare.