Revenues in the worldwide server market grew 6.2% in 2004, and it is now worth over $49 billion. IBM and Hewlett-Packard (HP) account for 60% of sales between them.
During the fourth quarter of 2004, IBM claimed 38% of the market share, 12% ahead of its nearest competitor HP. Factory revenues increased to $14.4 billion – an increase of 5.1% from the corresponding quarter of 2003.
While IBM leads the market in terms of revenue, HP ships the most servers. Worldwide, the number of units shipped grew 19.3% to 6.3 million.
Only the volume server sector of the market – accounting for servers priced less than $25,000 – experienced revenue growth in Q4 of 2004. The decline in revenue growth in the mid-range and high-end sectors was explained by IDC as resulting from a decrease in unit shipments and also continuing price compression of those units.
The x86 server market was worth $6.3 billion worldwide in the fourth quarter of 2004. Revenue increased by 14.4% compared to Q4 2003 and unit shipments grew 16.8% to 1.6 million servers. The doubling in size of the blade market in 2004 helped boost the sector. Blade server penetration reached nearly 7% of x86 shipments in the US.
The Unix market, despite only growing by 2.7% year on year, still accounted for revenues of $5.2 billion in the quarter. Revenues in the Windows server market accounted for $4.6 million, which represented a growth of 15.5%. Linux is the fastest growing segment, with a rate of 35.6% from the fourth quarter of 2003, to be worth $1.3 billion in Q4 2004.