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AMD gained graphics market share in 2010

Overall shipments of graphics cards fell in 2010, compared to the 'recession year' of 2009, according to numbers churned by Jon Peddie Research.

The researcher reckons some 72.8 million units were shipped in the 12-month period compared to 75.3 million for 2009, a result it calls "disappointing" but probably isn't if you're an environmentalist.

It was a good year for AMD overall. The firm managed to increase its market share by 12.6 per cent during 2010, while rival Nvidia lost 6.2 per cent. Where did the other six per cent go?

Nvidia fought back in the final quarter of the year managing to boost its share of the market by 3.6 per cent according to Peddie's estimates, while AMDs market share declined by 5.2 per cent for the same period.

While the sales volume may have slipped during the year, the value of the sales was up by almost a single percentage point to $17.2 billion, demonstrating a rise in average selling prices as the higher-end gaming and workstation markets held sway.

Jon Peddie Research reckons the sales volumes were down because of reduced demand at the lower end of the market. Intel continues to ship most graphics chips because it integrates these onto its motherboards. AMD is beginning to eat into the add-in board market but its Fusion CPU/GPU combo chips won't have impacted much in 2010, other than to cause potential buyers to delay their purchases to pick one up.

The shift in market share to notebooks, laptops, and tablets is more likely to be hitting GPU sales overall