AMD loses CPU market share to Intel

Market share figures have revealed that chip-making underdog AMD has lost a substantial chunk of the CPU pie chart to its arch rival Intel.

The figures come from technology market analysis firm IDC, and show that AMD’s share of the overall CPU market now sits at 18.8 percent, compared with 22.3 percent in the same period of 2009. Meanwhile, Intel’s share has climbed from 77.3 percent to 81.08 percent in the same period.

AMD’s market share dropped in all of the categories – desktop, mobile and server – but took the biggest kicking the mobile segment. In this sector, AMD’s market share fell from 15 percent in the first quarter of 2009, to 12.1 percent in the same period of 2010. By comparison, Intel’s share rose from 84.3 percent to 87.8 percent in the same timeframe.

AMD hasn’t had an easy time in the mobile CPU market recently, particularly as it doesn’t have an immediate competitor to Intel’s Atom CPU. Then again, VIA has developed its own netbook CPU (the Nano), but VIA also saw its mobile CPU market share drop from 0.7 percent to just 0.1 percent in the same timeframe.

However, it looks as though AMD still has a devoted user-base in the desktop CPU business. The company’s market share only dropped from 29.8 percent to 28 percent between the first quarters of 2009 and 2010, showing that AMD’s Phenom and Phenom II CPUs are still continuing to ship in large numbers.

Similarly, AMD’s share of the server CPU market only fell from 10.7 percent to 9.8 percent between the first quarters of 2009 and 2010. It’s not all doom and gloom for AMD, though. Although AMD has had to concede some of its share of the market pie to Intel, the overall processor market has massively picked up since last year.

In fact, according to IDC, overall CPU shipments rose by 39 percent when you compare the first quarter of 2010 with the first quarter of 2009. As such, AMD is still accounting for 18.8 percent of a massively growing market. It might be a smaller percentage, but it’s a lot more processors.

As usual, there was a slight drop in shipments of 5.6 percent between the fourth quarter of 2009 and the first quarter of 2010, but IDC is confident that the processor market is back on its way up again.

IDC’s director of semiconductors: personal computing research, Shane Rau, pointed out that "PC processor shipments typically decline around 7 to 8 percent going from fourth quarter to first quarter. A decline of 5.6 percent is modest and wouldn't mean much by itself.”