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Intel, AMD remain major players in microprocessor market

Posted: 30 Mar 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:microprocessor? market? recession?

2010 was a period of major changes in the microprocessor market, yet there was no shift in the continued domination of Intel Corp. and in Advanced Micro Devices Inc.'s (AMD) runner-up status, according to market research firm IHS iSuppli.

IHS iSuupli said that after the 2009 recession, the global microprocessor market revenue surged 25 percent to $40 billion in 2010. There was almost no change in leader Intel's market share, rising 0.4 percentage points to 81 percent, while AMD's was down nearly a point at 11.4 percent. According to Matthew Wilkins, principal analyst of IHS iSuppli, suppliers were faced with various changes in 2010, particularly the emergence of media tablets and the growth in the use of graphics-enabled microprocessors (GEMs).

"Despite these developments, the competitive state of affairs remained very much the same two-horse race it has been for more than 20 years, with Intel firmly in the lead and AMD a distant second," Wilkins said. "While the static market share situation is emblematic of the mature conditions in the PC segment of the microprocessor industry, the competitive situation remained intense in 2010, with the two companies fighting for every dollar possible from original equipment manufacturers."

Due to the soaring demand for media tablets, the research firm believes that the new market segment will present various opportunities for Intel and AMD, as well as suppliers such as Samsung. IHS estimates that some 17.4 million tabletsmostly Apple Inc.'s iPadwere shipped in 2010. The firm expects unit shipments to exceed 240 million units in 2015.

Wilkins added that GEMs represented a major shift in 2010, as they accounted for more than a third of total microprocessor shipments for notebook and desktop PCs. Both Intel and AMD have jumped into the GEM market, he noted.

IHS iSuppli noted that the global microprocessor market showed no significant changes in the fourth quarter, with Intel cornering 81.5 percent of global microprocessor revenue or just 0.5 percent higher than in Q4 2009. Intel accounted for 80.8 percent in the third quarter of 2010. AMD, on the other hand, saw its share of the worldwide microprocessor market revenue drop 0.5 percentage points from the third quarter to 10.9 percent. On a yearly basis, AMD's revenue share plunged 1.3 percentage points from 12.2 percent in Q4 2009.

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