Gartner: Server market still growing

Despite the economic downturn, server sales are on the up, with Dell seeing the largest growth, according to the analyst house

While the continuing economic downturn might suggest that the market for computer hardware should likewise take a dip, the latest figures for server sales from analyst house Gartner suggest that the market is still seeing growth.

Gartner's survey found that, in the second quarter, global sales of servers grew by 12.2 percent year-on-year. Revenue was $13.8bn (£7.4bn) and 2.3 million units were shipped. All of the top five companies in the market — HP, Dell, IBM, Sun and Fujitsu Siemens — saw shipments grow over the previous quarter last year.

Dell saw the biggest gain, with its shipments increasing by 24.2 percent year-on-year. HP, by contrast, saw modest growth of 8.7 percent and IBM saw shipments rise by just 4.7 percent.

IBM continued to maintain its revenue lead, with $4.3bn in server revenue, giving the company a market share of 31.2 percent.

In EMEA, the picture is similar, with Dell showing 22.1 percent growth in server shipments in the second quarter. HP's saw shipments grow by 14.9 percent, outstripping those of IBM and Fujitsu Siemens.

"Dell again outpaced its nearest rivals, growing 22.1 percent year-on-year," Gartner senior research analyst Errol Rasit told "IBM and Fujitsu... each lost volume share in the second quarter of 2008, while Sun maintained its share position compared to last year, accounting for 4.2 percent of the overall server market."

IBM has maintained its share in terms of revenue, thanks to "solid increases in both its System p and System z brands, which offset some revenue declines in its other brands", Gartner said.