Acer rode the netbook wave to coast past Dell in the global PC market in 2009, but its stay at the number two spot was brief as Dell came back in the second quarter of 2010 to retake that position. If one fad led to Acer’s sudden rise in 2009, another triggered its slide past Dell in 2010.
According market research firm iSuppli, Acer continues to slide in face of some stiff competition for its consumer-focused computer products from iPad and other media tablets, affording second-placed Dell an increasingly stronger sense of comfort. Hit the jump for Q4 2010 PC shipment numbers from iSuppli.
The Business Insider chart of the day today paints a grim picture for the music industry. After reaching unparalleled heights in terms of sales in the early 2000s, the slide came on fast with the increase in other forms of digital entertainment and (of course) some piracy. Digital downloads? Not pulling their weight.
According to market research firm Canalys, smartphones had a really big year in 2010. In the last quarter of the year, smartphone shipments increased to 101.2 million units. That's double what they were previously. A big part of this success comes from Google's Android platform. Overall, Android phone sales went up 615% year over year. In Q4 2009, Android only held 8.7% of total sales. Now it's sitting on top with a 32.9% share.
That's not to say the Google rival Apple had it rough. The iPhone 4 was the single most popular handset, and Apple itself managed to best RIM with a 16% share. Nokia's numbers are also of note. The maker of N and E series smartphones has traditionally held the top sop in total shipped units. But now Google has taken that spot.
It seems like a lock that smartphone sales will continue to rise. While not everyone needs them, cheaper smartphones will continue luring new users this year. Do you think Android will contionue its rise, or will Apple short circuit those plans?
Amazon's third-generation Kindle proved to be the catalyst pushing the e-tailer to its first $10 billion quarter ($12.95 billion, to be exact) in Q4, while noting that sales were up a healthy 36 percent, the company announced on Thursday.
"Thanks to our customers, we achieved two big milestones," said Jeff Bezos, found and CEO of Amazon.com. "We had our first $10 billion quarter, and after selling millions of third-generation Kindles with the new Pearl e-ink display during the quarter, Kindle books have now overtaken paperback books as the most popular format on Amazon.com."
Overall it was a killer year for Amazon, which reported a net sales increase of 40 percent to $34.20 billion, compared with $24.51 billion in 2009. The Kindle platform is the big reason why, and the U.S. Kindle Store now has more than 810,000 books to choose from. Over 670,000 of them are $10 or less, Amazon says.
AMD’s interim CEO Thomas Seifert appeared to be enjoying his position as top dog on Friday when he reported a whopping$1.65 billion in revenue, and over $375 million in net income. In addition to the unusually strong financial numbers, he also reported that AMD has shipped over 1.3 million Fusion APUs to AMD partners since deliveries began back in November. That’s a very impressive statistic for such a new part. Fusion based notebooks only just started trickling out over the past few weeks, but based on these figures we expect this will change very soon.
Fusion wasn’t the only winner in AMD’s portfolio for 2010 either, Seifert was proud to report that over 35 million Radeon HD 5000 and HD 6000 series DirectX 11 GPUs have shipped since they hit the market just over one year ago. Numbers like these make the PC one of the bestselling gaming platforms on the market, a point AMD was no doubt trying to drive home.
Intel still dwarfs AMD’s sales several times over, but I’m sure everyone here is glad to see a competitive AMD back on the prowl.
Worldwide semiconductor sales for November 2010 reached $26 billion, down 0.9 percent from one month prior, but up 14.4 percent from the same month in 2009, according to new data by the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA).
"Despite continuing macroeconomic uncertainty, the semiconductor industry is slated to close the year at record sales levels with year-over-year growth rates not experienced in nearly a decade," said SIA President Brian Toohey. "The application of advanced technologies continues to further the proliferation of semiconductor content into a wider range of end products including media tablets, smartphones, eReaders, and automobiles, resulting in impressive semiconductor sales in 2010. We expect continued moderation in sales growth, in line with our November forecast."
For the whole year up to November, sales surged 34 percent to $271.8 billion, a staggering $202.8 billion increase from the same 11 month period in 2009. By 2012, SIA expects semiconductor sales to reach $329.7 billion.
The Kindle 3 appears to be a modest upgrade over the previous generation e-reader. But that hasn't stopped people from throwing their money at Amazon. Analysts had predicted that Amazon would sell around 5 million Kindles in 2010. Riding high on the Kindle 3 wave, Bloomberg reports the retailer is likely to sell over 8 million instead.
To really put this in perspective, in 2009 Amazon moved only 2.4 million of the e-reader devices. Clearly, this last year has been big for electronic books. Users of mobile phones and the iPad are also able to buy into the Amazon book ecosystem with Kindle apps. But contrary to some predictions in the wake of the iPad announcement, demand for the dedicated e-reader is not abating.
The Kindle 3 offers the same size eInk display in an overall smaller and lighter form factor. The new screen also has higher contrast than earlier models. Have you noticed more people buying Kindles this year?
Microsoft has been very coy when it comes to discussing Windows Phone 7 numbers. But the software giant has finally given us something to mull over. According to MocoNews, Microsoft mentioned in an internally produced interview that 1.5 million handsets have been shipped to carriers and other retailers. That's not actual sales to consumers, but just phones that have been sent out for sale.
We're expecting some sort of detailed numbers at CES, but in the meantime, Microsoft isn't doing itself any favors staying silent. Microsoft has only been willing to speak in generalities. They point out that their performance is about on par with other first generation mobile platforms at launch. While phone sales are still shady, the app ecosystem is coming along well. The Windows Phone Marketplace has over 4000 apps so far.
It's only been two months since WP7 dropped, so we're willing to give them time to get their ducks in a row. But will consumers offer them the same courtesy.
Not only did the games industry post a positive month in November, 2010, it posted the best November ever, getting a lot of help from Microsoft's Kinect and Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops, according to the NPD Group.
Total sales climbed to $2.99 billion, an 8 percent jump from last November. Gamers spent $1.46 on software (up 4 percent), $1.08 billion on hardware (up 2 percent), and $413.3 million on accessories such as the Kinect (up a whopping 69 percent).
"November sales represent the best November on record in terms of new physical retail sales," said NPD industry analyst Anita Frazier. "It bests November 2008 by roughly $30 million, and that time frame was at the height of the music/dance genre sales."
The Nintendo DS dominated the hardware scene, while the Xbox 360 was the best selling non-handheld console for the month. On the software front, Call of Duty: Black Ops became the best selling game in its launch month with 8.4 million units, NPD noted.
If Valve's proven anything over the years, it's that it knows two things: games and sales. Going by that (incredibly flimsy) logic, then, The Great Steam Treasure Hunt is the culmination of everything Valve's ever created. Think we're full of crap? Well, fine then, leave. We'll just keep all these great deals and priceless prizes for ourselves. Oh, back so soon? Yeah, that's what we thought.
So here's how it works: The Steam Treasure Hunt tasks you with completing any of ten in-game objectives leading up to December 20, when three winners will be given a golden ticket to crazy Newell's videogame factory. Translation: 100 free games of your choosing. On top of that, Valve's selecting 20 contestants every two days and granting them the top five games in their wishlist.
Let's face it, though: this sort of thing is just a step or two below the lottery. Why even try? Well, for you, Debbie, and the rest of the Downer family, there's still a reason to briefly shoo that stormcloud away from your head. Whenever a game has an objective attached to it (for instance, right now you need to become a Desert Fox in RUSE, among other things), it's put on sale. Currently, RUSE is going for $33.49, Poker Night at the Inventory's at $2.99, and Chime's at $1.25.
So then, there's something for everyone. Unfortunately, it's now only a matter of time until Valve makes shopping as fun as playing Half-Life, Portal, or Team Fortress, at which point we'll all go end up living on the streets. For now, though, hooray!