Sunday, November 2, 2008

ATI Radeon HD 4850 Becomes The Most Popular Graphics Card in the U.S. Retail

The recently released market share numbers by Jon Peddie Research clearly show that ATI, graphics product group of Advanced Micro Devices, is starting to fight back market share from the arch-rival Nvidia. According to another market tracking firm, NPD, the latest products by ATI – Radeon HD 4850 and 4870 – are indeed gaining popularity in the U.S. retail market.

Even though 7 out of top 10 spots are still occupied by Nvidia GeForce graphics cards, the best selling graphics board in the U.S. retail in September was Visiontek Radeon HD 4850 512MB, reports TG Daily web-site citing NPD Group. The whole list looks as follows:

1. Visiontek 512MB GDDR3 ATI Radeon HD 4850 : 4197 (units)
2. PNY 512MB DDR2 Nvidia GeForce 8500 GT : 4106
3. PNY 512MB GDDR3 Nvidia GeForce 8800 GT : 3080
4. BFG 512MB GDDR3 Nvidia GeForce 8400 GS : 3079
5. Visiontek 512MB GDDR5 ATI Radeon HD 4870 : 3052
6. EVGA 384MB GDDR3 Nvidia GeForce 9600 GSO : 3011
7. EVGA 256MB GDDR3 Nvidia GeForce 8600 GT : 2670
8. EVGA 512MB GDDR3 Nvidia GeForce 9800 GT : 2634
9. EVGA 512MB GDDR3 Nvidia 8800 GT : 2561
10. Asustek 512MB GDDR3 ATI Radeon HD 4850 : 2509

It should be noted that the majority of advanced graphics cards are acquired from online stores due to their lower pricing. However, since retail buyers are not usually as technically savvy as those who use electronic stores, the success of rather expensive graphics cards based on ATI Radeon HD 4850 and 4870 may be an indicator that gamers begin to feel confidence in ATI’s performance-mainstream products.

Despite of financial crisis, total available market of graphics adapters increased dramatically in the third quarter of 2008. According to figures released by JPR, in Q3 2008 over 111 million graphics adapters (both standalone and integrated) were shipped. During the same quarter last year, only 91 million graphics products were shipped, and 94 million units shipped in Q2 2008, which means that shipments of graphics cores increased 22.5% year over year and 17.8% quarter-to-quarter, an unbelievable boost in general and especially noteworthy considering the current market conditions.

ATI, graphics product group of Advanced Micro Devices, was the biggest winner in Q3 2008 thanks to successful launch of ATI Radeon HD 4000-series products. The company managed to boost its shipments by 33.8% and increase its market share to 20.6%. Intel Corp. also managed to boost shipments of its chipsets with integrated graphics processors (IGPs) by 23%. Nvidia Corp. did not manage to increase its sales inline with market trends and only reported 4.4% increase in shipments during the quarter as well as market share decline to 27.8%. Also, despite of positive market conditions, Silicon Integrated Systems reported 28.9% decrease in IGP shipments in Q3, whereas Via Technologies/S3 Graphics succeeded in increasing its graphics products sales by 2.1%.

Mr. Peddie noted that Q4 2008 should be an interesting quarter as ATI and Nvidia are not expected to release any more new GPUs given the large number of introductions in the last three quarters, and Intel and AMD have stabilized on their integrated offerings.

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