IDC: 2Q Server units up; Price war looms; IBM keeps market share lead

IBM maintained its server market share lead over HP as worldwide factory revenue was up 6.4 percent to $13.

IBM maintained its server market share lead over HP as worldwide factory revenue was up 6.4 percent to $13.9 billion in the second quarter, but vendors saw "strong pricing pressure in the marketplace," according to research firm IDC.

In it quarterly report on server sales, IDC found:

  • Unit server shipments were up 11.1 percent in the second quarter compared to a year ago.
  • Volume systems revenue was up 2.1 percent in the second quarter.
  • Revenue for midrange enterprise servers was up 1.5 percent in the second quarter from a year ago while high-end enterprise servers jumped 22.1 percent.
  • There is a sustained refresh cycle across all server markets.
  • x86-based systems revenue was up 3 percent in the second quarter compared to year ago. that growth rate was disappointing for vendors and price competition abounds. Dell had the most growth in x86 server growth, up 14.1 percent in the second quarter. HP is still the market leader with 33.9 percent of the x86 server market followed by Dell at 24.7 percent.
  • Linux servers had second quarter revenue growth of 10 percent to $1.9 billion. That tally is now 13.4 percent of all server revenue, up from 9.4 percent a year ago.
  • Unix server revenue was up 7.7 percent from a year ago. High-end enterprises are big Unix buyers. Revenue for Unix servers was $4.6 billion in the second quarter, or 32.7 percent of spending.
  • Windows server revenue was $5.1 billion in the quarter, up 1.7 percent from a year ago. Windows server revenue was 36.5 percent of the total global tally.
  • IBM's System z server revenue was up 31.7 percent from a year ago to $1.6 billion. IBM mainframes running the z OS accounted for 11.8 percent of all server revenue.

Falling prices, however, indicate that server growth is a wild card for the second half of 2008, said IDC. Customers continue to roll out various technologies--Unix systems, mainframes and x86 blades--for their infrastructure.

Here are the standings:

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