GPU shipments slump during Q4'12, claims report

GPU shipments slump during Q4'12, claims report

Summary: Graphics chips are considered an important metric for gauging the health of the PC industry, and during the last quarter fo 2012 all the major players experienced a slump in shipments.

TOPICS: Hardware, PCs

The final quarter of 2012 was a bad one for the GPU industry, with all the major players experiencing a precipitous slump in shipments.

According to Jon Peddie Research, every one of the major players in the GPU market saw shipments of GPU silicon fall. Nvidia saw the biggest drop, falling 16.7 percent quarter-to-quarter, and AMD seeing shipments fall by 13.6 percent. Intel suffered the smallest slip, down only 2.9 percent.

Overall, the graphics market fell 8.2 percent, while the PC industry as a whole grew 2.8 percent. The difference, according to the report, "may be attributed to Intel's improved embedded graphics, finally making 'good enough' a true statement."

"On a year-to-year basis," the report says, "we found that total graphics shipments during Q4'12 dropped 11.5% as compared to PCs which declined by 5.6% overall. GPUs are traditionally a leading indicator of the market, since a GPU goes into every system before it is shipped and most of the PC vendors are guiding down for Q1'13."

(Source: Jon Peddie Research)

In real terms, shipments were down 3 million units from the same quarter the previous year.

But despite the popularity of tablets and smartphones, the report predicts that the CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) for PC graphics from 2012 to 2016 will be 3.2 percent, and we expect the total shipments of graphics chips in 2016 to be 549 million units.

Both discrete graphics chips (those built onto graphics cards and chips with graphics (such as APUs) are considered a leading indicator for the PC market. At least one GPU is present in every PC shipped, with some shipping with two or more (for example, a discrete GPU and a separate graphics chip inside the CPU. The average number of graphics chips in a system has grown from 1.2 GPUs per PC in 2001 to almost 1.4 GPUs per PC for the end of 2012.

Topics: Hardware, PCs

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  • I think there's a better explanation.

    "The difference, according to the report, 'may be attributed to Intel's improved embedded graphics, finally making 'good enough' a true statement.'"

    Except that it appears that Intel is in the list, so even embedded is dropping. I don't think that's the right explanation.

    The problem is actually likely to be consoles. Other than the Wii U, we haven't seen a new console in ages, and everybody wants to develop games for them. And PCs usually end up with console ports. Which means that PCs are currently not getting games that will use the entire power of state of the art GPUs. It's been years since we've seen a big graphics pusher like Crysis, and none of the big names wants to take a risk on another one, because they want to make all of their games compatible with consoles, which are still more popular than PCs for games despite their age and long outdated tech.

    Gamers are also increasingly being given the finger by tech journalists who want to group them all into the the category of "niche," which isn't helping either.
    • PC Gamers are more often not Console gamers.

      Apples and oranges; i feel the main factors are that game companies want to increase market share; you don't do that by writing games for the top 5% of GPU's you write games for the ~$150 card market. The cards sold at $150 2 years ago are still the $150 cards of today in erms of performance most are more than enough to power the majority of PC game titles so there is no reason at all to buy new GPU's. The market for CPU's and GPU's is plateauing plain and simple.

      By the way the integrated intel Graphics are total crap for serious gaming.
      • Re: PC Gamers are more often not Console gamers.

        But judging from the sales figures, console gamers are clearly dominating PC gamers.

        And this is no mere blip, it's been the long-term trend for some years now.
  • Windows 8 is doing just great!

    Steve Ballmer
  • Serious Gaming on PC's?

    That's a joke, right? Who in their right mind, other than some punk kid with $3,000 or more to spend on nothing but bragging rights, has the money to build a high-end gaming PC any more? Gone are the days where parents gave into their kids' demands for the latest hardware ... At this point the current generation of parents has actually grown up with PC's and understands that there is no need for the newest chip, the most expensive RAM, the biggest tower. Instead, everyone is hovering towards the consoles, which are now available for
    • I dont think so!!

      I only game on a custom PC, wounldnt game on a console if it was given to me. No one is a punk kid, anyone that thinks so is an idiot! BTW, your totally WRONG!!