Intel, Nvidia Spark Good News for Graphics Market

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2009-04-28

Jon Peddie Research is predicting positive times ahead for graphics chip makers, such as Advanced Micro Devices, Intel and Nvidia, based on estimated graphics shipments and supplier market share for the first quarter of 2009.  
The research firm reports that in the third and fourth quarters of 2008, GPU (graphics processing units) orders dried up and slowly the inventory was used. Consequently, with inventories depleted by the first quarter of 2009, OEMs had to start buying again.
"The net result was that Intel and Nvidia were the big winners, breaking an eight-year seasonal trend that dictated negative sales from [the fourth quarter to the following first quarter.] This year, [first quarter] shipments were up," states the firm in an April 28 report on its findings.
This year, 2009, showed a 3.29 percentage of growth from the fourth quarter to the first quarter. The average percentage for 2001 though 2008 was negative 4.31 percent. The change from the fourth quarter to the first quarter of 2008, for example, was negative 5.59 percent.
"Things probably aren't going to get back to the normal seasonality [until quarter three] this year, and we won't hit the levels of 2008 until 2010," stated the firm.
However, "Old computers will fail, new employees will be hired and need machines, and of course software upgrades...will be coming along."
Jon Peddie Research is predicting an upturn in the PC market for the second half of the year, in particular for the graphics market. Expected market drivers include: new designs from ATI - AMD graphics division - and Nvidia; 40-nanometer GPUs; the effects of worldwide stimulus programs; and new operating systems such as Apple Snow Leopard and Microsoft Windows 7.
On April 14, Intel reported a net profit of $647 million for the first quarter of 2009. Jon Peddie Research reports that Intel shipped 37.2 million units in the first quarter of 2009 and held 49.7 percent of the market share; a year earlier, it shipped 40.5 million units in the quarter and held 42.7 percent market share.
Nvidia reported a net income of $176.8 million for the first quarter of 2009, and Jon Peddie reports that it shipped 23.3 million units and held 31.1 percent market share for the quarter. In the same quarter of 2008, it shipped 31 million units and held a market share of 32.7 percent.
And finally, a limping AMD, the No. 3 performer in the market, shipped 12.81 million units in the first quarter of 2009 and held 17.1 percent market share - down from 17.67 million units in the first quarter of 2008 and 18.6 percent market share. On April 21, AMD reported a first quarter 2009 loss of $416 million.

In agreement with the new data from Jon Peddie Research, however, AMD executives also said they expected a much stronger second half of the year.  

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