Graphics Boards, Workstation Sales Strong in 4Q09

The latest figures from Jon Peddie Research show strong sales gains for both PC graphics and workstations in the last three months of 2009. Dell has clawed its way back to a virtual tie in workstation units shipped with HP.

JPR logoSales of both PC graphics hardware and PC workstations made strong gains in the final three months of 2009, according to market research firm Jon Peddie Research.

Workstation sales have risen sequentially every quarter since 1Q09, the quarter when unit sales dropped sequentially by almost 30% in one quarter. For the quarter ending December 31, 2009, workstation shipments totaled 716,900 units, up 11.2% sequentially but down 6% from a year earlier.

Workstation Shipments By Quarter
Quarter      3Q08      4Q08     1Q09       2Q09       3Q09       4Q09
Units          854K       764K      576K       602K       644K        716K

In 3Q09 HP overtook Dell in workstation unit volume to take the top spot. Since then Dell has fought back, raising its fourth quarter unit share back up 1.5 points, in the process moving back into a virtual dead heat with HP.

Professional graphics market unexpectedly hot
The professional graphics market in the fourth quarter posted results significantly hotter than expected, says JPR. Unit sales (mobiles included) were up 53.3% year-over-year while revenue (add-in cards only) close behind with a 41.1% increase. JPR says the market for professional graphics parallels the
workstation market, with the former’s performance often providing an effective leading indicator for the latter’s. So these results predict good times for workstations in 2010.

Intel was the leader in 4Q09, elevated by Atom sales for netbooks, as well as strong growth in the desktop segment. AMD gained in the notebook integrated segment, but lost some market share in discrete in both the desktop and notebook segments due to constraints in the supply of 40nm chips. NVIDIA picked up a little share overall.

AMD reported revenue of $427 million from their graphics segment for the quarter, up 40% sequentially. AMD’s graphics segment reported an operating income of $53 million, a substantial improvement from the prior quarter. Intel reported revenue from chipset and other revenue of $1.877 billion in 4Q. §