In July, both IDC and Gartner had reported that there was an uptick in second-quarter shipments for this market, with IDC reporting growth of 11.2% year-on-year while Gartner reported a lower 2.8% hike.
IDC said in a statement on Tuesday that demand was largely due to the additional number of people working from home and also due to an increase in online education. A smaller proportion was due to people seeking a means of entertainment, the company said.
The 2020 increase was notable, IDC said, given that 2019 had seen strong growth due to the end of official support for Windows 7.
"Technology has been the big winner in all of this as device spending has been especially surprising, with spend at year-end, holiday-like levels throughout much of the second quarter."
But next year looks different, with IDC forecasting that there would be a decline in shipments in 2021 due to the continued uncertainty over the pandemic.
The market was forecast to decline with a fall in compound annual growth of -2-2%, which meant that annual shipments would come in at 389.6 million units.
"Schools around the world are already scrambling to procure notebooks for their students," said Jitesh Ubrani research manager for IDC's Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers.
"The excessive demand, some short-term component shortages, and general uncertainty about the upcoming school year have led many schools to purchase as many units as they can.
"Unfortunately, these additional purchases during 2020 means that many schools would have blown through their future budgets, which will contribute to double-digit declines in the education segment during 2021 and 2022."