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3Q Server Sales Reach $12.5B

IDC and Gartner may be rivals in the analyst community, but on Wednesday they did agree on who the top five server vendors were in the third quarter of 2005.

Framingham, Mass.-based IDC and San Jose, Calif.-based Gartner both gave the top honor to IBM. IDC said IBM's worldwide server revenue climbed 10.3 percent over the same quarter last year to hit $4 billion. Gartner pegged IBM's revenue at about $4.1 billion, up 9 percent year over year.

Hewlett-Packard was No. 2, according to both analyst firms. IDC said HP's worldwide server revenue increased 12.4 percent to hit $3.5 billion, while Gartner pegged HP's third-quarter growth at a more modest 6.6 percent to reach $3.5 billion.

Dell grabbed the No. 3 spot from Sun Microsystems, according to IDC. Dell's worldwide server revenue was $1.3 billion, up 11.8 percent, while Sun's revenue fell 7.6 percent to $1.1 billion. Rounding out IDC's top five was Fujitsu/Fujitsu-Siemens with revenue of $756 million, up 5.9 percent.

Gartner also assigned Dell third place with revenue of $1.3 billion, which it estimated was up 8.9 percent. Sun followed with $1.1 billion, down 7.6 percent, followed by Fujitsu/Fujitsu Siemens, up 7 percent to $690 million.

In terms of unit shipments, Gartner gave the top spot to HP, which shipped about 504,000 servers worldwide during the quarter, up 7.6 percent. Dell was second with about 416,000 servers, up 20 percent. IBM was third with shipments totaling 309,000, up 16.4 percent, followed by Sun at 78,000 units and Fujitsu/Fujitsu Siemens at 69,000.

Overall, revenue for the worldwide server market rose 8.1 percent over last year to reach $12.5 billion, according to IDC. Gartner also estimated the quarter's server revenue at $12.5 billion, which it says was a year-over-year growth rate of 5.6 percent.

IDC said the Linux segment continued to be the fastest-growing part of the server market, growing for its thirteenth consecutive quarter. Linux server revenue for the quarter was up 34.3 percent, and unit shipments were up 20.5 percent, indicating a strong increasing average unit price, the research firm said.

Microsoft-based server revenue was up 17.7 percent, exceeding sales of Unix-based servers for the first time, IDC said. Unix server revenue dipped 0.4 percent, while unit shipments fell 13.7 percent compared to last year, the researcher reporter.

Volume server revenue grew 14.8 percent over last year, compared to 3.8 percent growth for midrange enterprise servers and a decline of 1.2 percent for high-end enterprise servers, IDC said.

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