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IDC sees PC MPU shipment improvement this year

Posted: 07 May 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:PC MPU? microprocessor? processor?

Worldwide PC microprocessor unit shipments in Q1 10 declined 5.6 percent compared to Q4 09, according to the latest PC processor study from International Data Corp. (IDC).

A decline between a calendar year's Q4 and the next calendar year's Q1 is typical of seasonal demand patterns but this decline is less than normal. When compared to Q1 09, shipments in Q1 10 rose 39.0 percent. Total market revenue in Q1 10 fell 2 percent compared to Q4 09 and rose 40.4 percent compared to Q1 09.

"PC processor shipments typically decline around 7 to 8 percent going from fourth quarter to first quarter," said Shane Rau director of Semiconductors: Personal Computing research at IDC. "A decline of 5.6 percent is modest and wouldn't mean much by itself. However, after the huge rise in shipments we saw in the fourth quarter, it adds more credibility to market recovery and that the PC industry anticipates improvement in PC end demand in 2010."

Looking at market performance by PC form factor, mobile PC processors declined 6.3 percent quarter over quarter, desktop PC processors declined 5.1 percent quarter over quarter, and PC server processors declined 1.4 percent quarter over quarter.

The overall market average selling price in Q1 10 rose 4.1 percent q-on-q due to more high-end processors in the total mix compared to Q4 09. Notably, Intel's low-end Atom processor for mininotebooks (also known as netbooks) represented 20 percent of Intel's mobile PC processor mix in Q1 10, which is down from 24 percent in Q4 09.

"Intel's new Core processors and AMD's new Athlon processors are ramping, and at a time when, IDC believes, consumers and corporations will be anticipating a much healthier 2010 and looking for more value than just low price in their PCs," added Rau. "In terms of the processor, that means more openness to paying for benefits such as good performance and reduced power consumption that serves long battery life."

Vendor highlights
In Q1 10, Intel earned 81.0 percent unit market share, a gain of 0.5 percent, while AMD earned 18.8 percent, a loss of 0.6 percent, and VIA Technologies earned 0.2 percent.

In Q1 10 by form factor, Intel earned 87.8 percent share in the mobile PC processor segment, a gain of 0.5 percent. AMD finished the quarter with 12.1 percent, a loss of 0.6 percent, and VIA earned 0.1 percent. In the PC server/workstation processor segment, Intel finished with 90.2 percent market share, a gain of 0.4 percent and AMD earned 9.8 percent, a loss of 0.4 percent. In the desktop PC processor segment, Intel earned 71.7 percent, a gain of 0.6 percent, AMD earned 28.0 percent, a loss of 0.7 percent, and VIA earned 0.3 percent.

IDC forecasts worldwide PC processor unit will grow 15.1 percent this year. However, the results of Q1 10, low inventories, strong outlooks from PC semiconductor vendors and some PC OEMs, and a generally positive outlook for consumer and corporate IT spending for the rest of the year, are strong signs for additional growth. "IDC will be watching Q2 10 very closely," said Rau. "Specifically, we'll be watching for the expected improvement in corporate IT spending and talking to PC component suppliers to make sure that, after a long period of anemic capital expenditures, they believe end demand is solid and are bringing new capacity online."

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