News of the day (May 5, 2011)

 Graphics chips market share Q1 2011 - Update
  Posted on 1304593882 by Guillaume

John Peddie Research has published its quarterly study of graphics shipments. While PC shipments, at around 83 million, are down by 5.4% in the first quarter in comparison to the fourth quarter, GPU shipments are holding well at 125 million. Of course these statistics include all types of graphics chips, whether integrated GPUs or discrete cards, integrated graphics chipsets (AMD 890 G for example) or CPUs with a graphics core (AMD APUs or Intel Clarkdales/Sandy Bridges).

In comparison to the first quarter of 2010, the graphics market has grown by 10.3% in volume but a large part of this growth comes from the fact that more and more machines, whether laptops or not, technically have two GPUs, even if both aren’t used (a desktop PC with a Core i7 2600K on P67 and therefore accompanied by a graphics card counts as two GPUs). Intel shows a 9.7% increase in market share on the previous year but AMD has the strongest growth at 15.4%. As NVIDIA isn’t yet selling a processor with an integrated graphics part (a situation that will apparently change in 2012 if Microsoft pursues its plans to open Windows to ARM architecture), its overall graphics market share is down the most.

Update: NVIDIA sent us the figures for market share percentages for discrete GPUs (desktop and notebook) from Mercury Research:

Although there has been a slight fall in NVIDIA discrete desktop shipments, they are still comfortably in pole position on this very prominent segment. Where AMD has made the biggest gains is with laptops, taking the lead in terms of volumes sold in 2010. The rhythm of this market is governed by the launch of Intel platforms and while the choices made by OEMs for mobile Sandy Bridge platforms are starting to make themselves felt, we’ll have to wait for the second quarter to get a clearer picture, with the Serial ATA bug on Intel series 6 chipsets delaying releases.

 AMD price cuts
  Posted on 1304591921 by Guillaume

The launch of the Phenom II X4 980 BE at the beginning of the week was accompanied by a generalised price cut across the AMD range (the second this year). The first surprise is that the Phenom II X4 980 BE will cost $185 instead of $195 (the old price of the X4 975). The second is that the cuts have been introduced across the board, including on the Phenom II X6s. The new pricings are as follows (in dollars):

The fact that the launch of the Llano and Bulldozer platforms is scheduled to take place in under two months is of course no stranger to these cuts.

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