Processor Shipments on the Rebound with Record-breaking Growth

Pulkit Chandna

The PC processor market seems to be on a comeback trail. According to a fresh report by IDC, CPU shipments in the third quarter of 2009 increased 23 percent from the previous quarter, which is a new record for sequential growth. The increase in shipments was accompanied by a 14 percent sequential increase in revenue. The sales of PC processors in the quarter helped generate $7.4 billion in revenue.

Mobile CPU shipments grew 35.7 percent in 3Q09 to bail the industry out from what is now a receding crisis. The Intel Atom processor merits a special mention as it led the industry's comeback during the quarter. But the low average selling price of Atom processors meant that the record growth in shipments did not quite translate into record revenue.

"While Atom processors led the PC processor market to reach record unit shipments, on the revenue side, their low average selling price led to notable price erosion, more than 7 percent." said Shane Rau, director of semiconductors for personal computing research at IDC.

"The market's growth has been due to shipments of inexpensive Atom processors being sold into markets like China, which is being stimulated by government incentives there," said Rau.

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