Thursday, January 15, 2015

The Worldwide x86 Server Market Sees Continued Growth

Back in December, both IDC and Gartner released their third-quarter assessments of worldwide server shipments and revenues reports. Each of these reports concluded that there was modest growth within the market, with the most demand coming from large-scale cloud service providers with big data analytics, mobile, and social areas also showing modest growth. Both Gartner and IDC agree that the server market is being driven by the investments in hyperscale data centers. Gartner stated in its report that overall shipments grew one percent with a similar one percent revenue growth, whereas IDC claims a 5.7 percent shipment growth with revenue up 4.8 percent year over year improvements.

It was agreed upon in both reports that HP still remains the leading server vendor with Gartner reporting 26.9 percent and IDC reporting 26.5 percent of the total market share. IBM was revealed as the second largest holder of the market share with Gartner reporting 18.5 percent and IDC reporting a 23.2 percent share. Dell and Cisco came in as the number three and four vendors in revenue-based market share yet saw the biggest gains within the quarter. Cisco saw the highest growth in Q3 of 2014 with sales up more than 30 percent year over year, but from a much smaller base. 

The x86 server business continued to grow as shipments were up 1.2 percent with 7.4 percent growth in revenue with HP’s ProLiant servers seeing the biggest increase in demand. Blade servers increased 2 percent year over year due to their use in virtualized and converged enterprise environments, reaching $2.3 billion.

Both reports also agreed that non-x86 servers continued to see a decline for the thirteenth consecutive quarter. According to IDC, IBM leads the non-x86 segment and saw a 24 percent revenue decline. Much of this decline was credited to October’s sale of their x86 server line to Lenovo. Gartner’s findings revealed that RISC/Itanium shipments declined by 17.1 percent with revenue dropping 8 percent. IBM was one of the vendors that took the worst hit with this decline and continues to revive their RISC-based Power Server line with an open source initiative.

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