Jon Peddie Research Releases Third-Quarter Market Report

4 Dec, 2008

Workstations and professional graphics post gains, but growth is slowing.

Jon Peddie Research (JPR) has completed its third-quarter analysis and reports the markets for workstations and professional graphics hardware saw unit growth, but at a reduced rate from previous quarters.

According to JPR, a total of 854.2 thousand workstations were shipped in Q3 2008, accounting for about $1.8 billion in revenue, which translates to year-over-year gains of 12.0% and 2.8%, respectively. However, the industry had been seeing 15% to 25% gains (unit growth) going back to 2005. The professional graphics hardware market experienced similar cooling, posting a unit gain of 8%, in contrast to the rates of 20% and 30% it had been seeing.

As the end of 2008 approaches, the industry again is seeing shifting fortunes among workstation suppliers and vendors. With the last two suppliers of traditional proprietary workstations -- Sun and IBM -- dropping their long-time UltraSPARC and POWER platforms (respectively), the transition to the PC-derived workstation is now complete. IBM is now out of the market completely, while Sun will hang on to one Intel-based model. In today's market, Dell and HP enjoy a near duopoly, with Lenovo and Fujitsu-Siemens remaining strong in specific pockets of the market, JPR reports.

On the platform side, AMD saw its workstation share decline. With HP's shipments of Opteron workstations taking a dip, and with Sun, the number-two provider of Opteron workstations, dropping the platform, AMD's share took a hit in the third quarter. AMD was responsible for approximately 2.1% of the processors shipped in workstations in the quarter, down from 2.9% in Q2 2008.

NVIDIA, meanwhile, shipped 90% of overall units in the third quarter, the highest share in JPR's records.