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Chinese maker Lenovo appears poised to topple Hewlett-Packard as the world’s No. 1 personal computer brand by the beginning of 2013. Figures published late last week by market research firm Gartner showed Lenovo with 14.7 percent of the global market in Q2, just behind H-P on 14.9 percent.

 This followed a decline of 12 percent in H-P’s shipments during the quarter, according to Gartner. Not much over a year ago, Lenovo was the No 4 maker worldwide, but it overtook Acer in mid year, then passed Dell in the third quarter of 2011 to nail down second spot, which it has hung onto ever since.

Dell meanwhile has slumped to fourth place. According to Gartner, H-P shipped 13.06 million PCs in Q2, followed by Lenovo (12.8 million), Acer(9.64 million) and Dell (9.35 million). The figures include netbooks but not tablets such as the iPad.