Framingham (MA) - Q3 2005 marked the tenth consecutive quarter of growth for the global server market. The largest server vendors - IBM, Hewlett-Packard and Dell - claimed the lion’s share of revenue increases, leaving moderate gains or declines to the rest of the market. Growth of the Linux server sales continued to outpace Windows systems.
According to IDC’s quarterly server report, the global server market still is on a healthy track, with factory revenues climbing 8.1 percent year over year to $12.5 billion in the third quarter of 2005. The most successful server segment continues to be volume servers, which gained 14.8 percent in sales increases over Q3 2004. Revenue for midrange enterprise servers grew 3.8 percent year over year, but high-end enterprise server market showed a 1.2 percent decline for the same time frame.
Evidence for this trend is a shipment growth at 11.3 percent that surpassed revenue growth and brought a year-over-year decline in average sales prices for servers. Linux popularity growth once again outran growth of Windows servers. According to IDC, Linux systems posted a year-over-year revenue growth of 34.3 percent and a gain in unit shipments of 20.5 percent. Windows servers increased their revenues by 17.7 percent and unit numbers by 15.3 percent. However, quarterly factory revenue of $4.6 billion for Windows servers represented the largest single segment - 36.8 percent - of the server market for the first time, IDC said.
Unix servers saw a 0.4 percent decline in factory revenue year over year, while unit shipments declined 13.7 percent when compared with Q3 2004. Worldwide Unix revenues of more than $3.9 billion for the quarter represented 31.7 percent of overall quarterly factory revenue.
The winners of the quarter were the three largest manufacturers, IBM, Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Dell. IBM keeps its position as the world’s largest server vendor with a market share of 32.3 percent ; HP follows with 27.8 percent and Dell with 10.5 percent, compared to 31.6 percent, 26.7 percent and 10.1 percent in Q3 of last year, respectively. Sun, ranked #4, experienced a 7.6 percent decrease in sales down to $1.1 billion, which resulted in a drop in market share from 10.2 to 8.7 percent.