AMD Gains Modest Market Share Growth At Intel Expense

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AMD has managed to grow its market share by a modest 1.6 percentage point, but Intel remains the undisputed chip sector goliath

The latest figures from market research company iSuppli shows that Advanced Micro Devices has managed to gain some market share in the worldwide microprocessor space, at the expense of Intel and smaller chip players.

In a report issued 31 March, iSuppli said AMD saw its market share in microprocessor revenue in the fourth quarter of 2009 grow to 12.1 percent, a jump of 1.6 percentage points over the same period in 2008, and a 0.28 percentage point increase over its market share in the third quarter 2009.

Intel’s dominance continued with an 80.6 percent share, a drop of 1 percentage point from the fourth quarter in 2008 and a 0.1 percentage point gain over the third period in 2009, according to iSuppli.

Collectively, smaller suppliers garnered a 7.3 percent market share, down 0.6 points from the fourth quarter in 2008.

For all of 2009, both Intel and AMD saw their market share stay fairly stable, with Intel picking up 0.3 points and AMD 0.2 points compared with all of 2008, according to iSuppli analyst Matthew Wilkins.

“This is an interesting development because PC Average Selling Prices (ASPs) dropped significantly during the course of 2009 – especially for notebooks.” Wilkins said in a statement. “So, the fact that AMD and Intel virtually maintained their market share at the annual level shows that neither supplier was overly punished by the dropping ASPs. It also indicates that neither was able to capitalise on the situation very effectively.”

Throughout the global recession of 2009, both Intel and AMD aggressively pursued their product road maps, rolling out a host of PC and server chips that offered increasingly better performance, improved energy efficiency metrics and more processing cores.

That has continued into the first quarter of 2010, most recently over the past two days, with AMD unveiling its eight- to 12-core Opteron 6000 “Magny-Cours” server processors and Intel rolling out its four- to eight-core Xeon 7500 “Nehalem EX” chips for systems with four or more sockets.

On 16 March, Intel launched its six-core Xeon 5600 “Westmere EP” processors for servers with two sockets. AMD will launch its “Lisbon” Opterons in the second quarter, aimed at the one- and two-socket server space.

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