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It's been quite a ride for ASRock, the motherboard maker that came into this world as a budget-oriented subsidiary of Asus. ASRock is now owned by Pegatron, which itself is a spin-off of Asus, and these days it competes with all comers (including Asus) in every section of the motherboard market, even the high-end. Pegatron's spunky subsidiary ended 2013 as the third largest motherboard maker in terms of shipments, though it may relinquish that spot to MSI before the new year is over.
MSI reportedly shipped around 6.5 million to 7 million motherboards in 2013 (the final tally is still being calculated) and is hot on the heels of ASRock, which is said to have shipped less than 7.5 million mobos, Digitimes reports. ASRock originally anticipated shipping around 9 million motherboards, but ultimately fell short of that goal.
According to Digitimes, MSI expects to ship 8 million motherboards this year. If MSI reaches its goal and ASRock stays where it's at for another year (ASRock shipped 7.7 million mobos in 2012), MSI will find itself in a somewhat distant third place behind Gigabyte and Asus, which themselves have been locked in a battle for first place.
As for Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), the company shipped around 4 million motherboards in 2013. The company mainly focuses on OEM orders these days.
All this competition is good for the consumer. In a bid to outsell each other, MSI and ASRock both beefed up their respective warranty periods and offer additional maintenance services, Digitimes says.