Market researcher Gartner has just recently released its third-quarter estimates on PC unit volumes, and the numbers weren't pretty for Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ). The iconic PC maker has given up its title as the top PC maker in the world, one it had held since the third quarter of 2006. The news is another parallel to Nokia (NYSE:NOK), who lost its own market crown recently. HP's shipments fell by 16.4% to 13.6 million. Dell (UNKNOWN:DELL.DL) also saw shipments drop by 13.7% to 9.2 million, enough to earn it a third-place finish with 10.5% share. The overall market remains sluggish, with total units down 8.3% at 87.5 million as the market anxiously awaits transitioning to Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows 8. Meanwhile on the domestic front, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) claimed a 13.6% market share, a new high for the Mac maker even as it also saw shipments fall.

It's been a frustrating path for Microsoft investors, who've watched thecompany fail to capitalize on the incredible growth in mobile over the past decade. However, with the release of its own tablet, along with the widely anticipated Windows 8 operating system, the company is looking to make a splash in this booming market. In this brand-new premium report on Microsoft our analyst explains that while the opportunity is huge, the challenges are many. He's also providing regular updates as key events occur, so make sure to claim a copy of this report now by clicking here.