Report: Intel And AMD Stagnant In Microprocessor Market

The rivalry between Intel and AMD in the semiconductor industry may have reached a standstill.

According to a report on global microprocessor industry revenue from analyst firm iSuppliissued Wednesday, the two biggest players in the chip market maintained their respective shares in the third quarter of 2010. Intel claimed 80.1 percent of global microprocessor revenue in Q3, while AMD claimed 11.3 percent.

Both companies faltered slightly compared to the second quarter of 2010. Intel lost 0.3 percent of its share from 80.4 percent in the second quarter, while AMD lost 0.2 percent from 11.5 percent. On a year-over-year basis, Intel's market share rose 0.3 percent while AMD's share was down 0.8 percent.

"In reality, the share changes in the third quarter from the two incumbents were extremely small and not at all significant," said Matthew Wilkins, principal analyst for compute platforms at iSuppli, in a statement. "What is significant, however, is that neither company has been able to take any sizable share away from the other. One reason is that each company offers well-matched competitive product portfolios. Another reason is that end markets are not undergoing significant changes in market share of product lineup that would impact microprocessor market share."

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Nor did the rest of the industry gain any ground on AMD and Intel. Overall worldwide microprocessor revenue was up 3 percent from Q2 2010 and 23 percent year-over-year. However, the combined revenue of companies other than Intel and AMD totaled 8.6 percent in Q3 2010, up 0.5 percent sequentially and 0.7 percent year-over-year.

Despite the stagnation over the past year, Wilkins believes the market for microprocessors will continue to be competitive, particularly with AMD's upcoming integrated graphics offering.

"There remains a very competitive situation between the two dominant suppliers," Wilkins said in a statement. "In particular, we look forward to seeing the effect that AMD's forthcoming Fusion products might have on the share situation for these two mega-players."

Last month, AMD shipped its first Fusion accelerated processor unit (APU), a low-power, lightweight processor code-named Zacate that was designed primarily for notebooks. AMD's Ontario APU, which will target netbooks and other small form factor devices, is scheduled to ship in 2011 along with Bulldozer, AMD's multi-threaded, high-performance x86 CPU. Bulldozer includes a 32-nm desktop version, code-named Zambezi (4, 6 or 8 core versions), and two 32-nm server editions code-named Valencia (6 or 8 cores) and Interlagos (8, 12 or 16 cores).

Next:Intel's Upcoming Graphics Solutions

Meanwhile, Intel last month began full production of its own integrated graphics solution code-named Oak Trail, which brings Intel's Atom design to tablets and is scheduled to begin shipping early next year.

The Oak Trail platform for mobile chips will combine the Atom Z670 processor and the SM35 chipset. Intel says Oak Trail processors will offer a 50 percent reduction in power consumption over its traditional PC offerings, in addition to full high-definition video viewing capability. Intel is also preparing to launch its Sandy Bridge processors, which integrate graphics processing on the central processor and includes video streaming collaboration, in the first quarter of next year.