Report: Intel, AMD Maintain Chip Market Positions In 2010

IHS iSuppli offered microprocessor revenue data for Intel, AMD, and the rest of the global CPU market -- including not only the x86 market, but also RISC and other chip platforms. According to the report, Intel currently holds 81 percent share of total microprocessor revenue, up 0.4 percent from 2009. Second-ranked AMD has an 11.4 percent share of the market, down 0.8 percent from a year ago.

“The competitive state of affairs remained very much the same two-horse race it has been for more than 20 years, with Intel firmly in the lead and AMD a distant second,” said Matthew Wilkins, principal analyst at HIS, in a statement. “While the static market share situation is emblematic of the mature conditions in the PC segment of the microprocessor industry, the competitive situation remained intense in 2010, with the two companies fighting for every dollar possible from original equipment manufacturers.”

However, Wilkins said that despite relatively stable revenue figures by company, the global chip market in 2010 underwent a period of transitions -- including the growing threat of cross-category cannibalization from tablets, and the gradual process of economic recovery. According to the report, IT industry microprocessor revenue increased 25 percent overall in 2010 to $40 billion -- this after dropping 6 percent in 2009.

Contributing to both tablet cannibalization and an overall increase in revenue was the emergence of Apple’s iPad device last year, which introduced a new, non-x86 platform to the market based on ARM’s low-power architecture.

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IHS iSuppli estimated that tablet shipments totaled 17.4 million in 2010, after not registering any shipments the previous year, and predicted that they will reach 40 million units in 2015. The study concludes that tablets represent a major area of opportunity for semiconductor firms as well as device manufacturers.

In addition, the emergence of a new category of integrated graphics processors, or graphics-enabled microprocessors, has impacted the market according to Wilkins. In a separate report last week, IHS iSuppli predicted that integrated CPU-GPU processors will penetrate the market significantly in 2011.