Lately I've been curious about early personal computers and how they became popular. Something I've realized is that my idea of which computers were most prevalent, and when, was quite wrong. I grew up using MS-DOS machines in the late 80s and early 90s, and so I imagined the ubiquity of "PC-compatibles" went back farther than it seems was really the case.
So now I'm wondering if anyone has ever seen anything like market research about how many households were using which lines of computer (Atari/Apple/Commodore/RadioShack/what-have-you) in given years in the 70s and 80s? I have been frustrated trying to find anything like this. I have seen some sales figures (Jeremy Reimer's impressive Ars Technica articles seem to be kind of authoritative here), but that kind of information doesn't quite paint the picture I'm interested in. With Internet Archive hosting so many early PC user magazines now I wonder if there might be consumer surveys or the like buried somewhere in some of them, but I thought it might be worth asking here in case anyone knows a nice go-to offhand :)
Any reply appreciated, thanks!
EDIT: Specifying my question per Raffzahn's suggestions (thank you!). Maybe any definition of a PC will be arbitrary but I'll say that here I'm interested in microprocessor-based, commercially available computer platforms which saw significant (not to say exclusive) adoption for use in homes. By "platform" I guess I mean a CPU plus some supporting standardized architecture enabling reliable use of common software. Generally I think the Altair 8800 is often touted as "the first" (again, a tricky designator but hopefully the particular arbitrary meaning I'm choosing gives enough of an idea of what I'm asking about at least) such machine, with the "1977 trinity" (Apple II, Commodore PET, Radio Shack TRS-80) following more prominently.
Really, numbers for "big names" among such platforms (Altair, the trinity, Atari 400/800, Commodore's many lines including Amiga, Atari ST, and eventually the IBM PC and Macintosh) alone would satisfy my curiosity I think. I started down this rabbit hole after waxing nostalgic with a friend about the computers we played games on growing up, then got to wondering what the "most typical" hardware in use would have looked like in given years. I hope this makes it clearer what I'm hoping to learn more about :)
SECOND EDIT for Raffzahn: Sorry, I forgot to link the articles I mentioned. https://arstechnica.com/features/2005/12/total-share/ for Reimer's article, and at https://jeremyreimer.com/rockets-item.lsp?p=137 he offers a link to the dataset he collected and drew from for that article.
EDIT to answer Greenonline: Say (per Reimer's data) ~5 million IBM PCs/compatibles were sold in 1986, the first year in which that line accounted for a majority market share. Presumably that doesn't mean that in 1986, more than half of people who had a computer in their home were using an IBM PC or PC-compatible, because plenty of computers were still in use that were purchased in 1985, '84, '83... does that make sense? Also, the figure of ~5 million isn't broken down by home vs. business use; lots of machines bought for business use are included there. It appears the Commodore 64 remains the best-selling single PC product of all time, and I'd imagine a higher proportion of C64s were bought for home use than business use, relative to IBM.
To Mark Morgan Lloyd's question: I didn't have that distinction in mind; by "MS-DOS machines" I meant only PC-compatibles :)