Intel loses laptop chip market share to AMD in Q3

AMD gains market share in Q3 as its Fusion chip gains strength and Intel's Atom processor hurts

Intel registered a drop in worldwide laptop-processor market share during the third quarter this year as Advanced Micro Devices came on strong with its latest Fusion PC processors, IDC said.

Intel's laptop-processor market share fell to 82.3 per cent during the third quarter from 85.9 percent during the third quarter last year, IDC said in a study. AMD's market share grew to 17.6 per cent during the third quarter from 13.7 percent last year.

Intel's overall microprocessor market share dipped to 80.2 per cent during the third quarter from 80.4 per cent the previous year. Despite losing market share in desktop and server processors, AMD's overall processor market share grew to 19.7 per cent from 19.2 per cent.

The latest Fusion processors from AMD grew in volume shipments, and so did Intel's latest processors code-named Sandy Bridge, both of which were released this year, IDC said. But Intel's market share was stung by the slowdown by its Atom processors, which are mostly used in netbooks. Netbook shipments have been hurting with the growing interest in tablets.

AMD's Fusion and Intel's Sandy Bridge combine a CPU and graphics core on a single chip. AMD's Fusion chips are considered superior compared to their predecessors from last year, which did not have the CPU and GPU on a single chip. The Fusion line includes chips code-named Ontario and Zacate for low-power PCs, and Llano for mainstream PCs, which appeared in desktops and laptops during the middle of the year.

Around 90 percent of processors shipped by AMD during the fiscal third quarter were Fusion chips, the company said late last month.

AMD gained market share despite chip manufacturing issues. AMD's chip shipment problems emerged after partner GlobalFoundries had manufacturing issues with the 32-nanometer process, which limited supply of Llano chips. An analyst earlier this week said that AMD met its quota of laptop chip shipments to meet the growing market needs, while sacrificing on desktop chip shipments, where AMD ceded market share to Intel.

In the desktop segment, Intel had a 75.8 per cent market share in the third quarter, growing from 71.8 per cent market share last year. AMD's market share fell to 24.1 per cent from 27.8 per cent.

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