Sun sets lowest in server market

Sun Microsystems clocks lowest revenue and shipment among global top 5 server vendors for third quarter 2009, says Gartner.

All top 5 server vendors globally saw declines in revenue and shipment in the third quarter of 2009, with Sun Microsystems registering the biggest fall, according to latest figures from Gartner.

In a report released Monday, the research firm noted that Sun Microsystems saw its server revenue drop 32.3 percent and unit shipment dip 38 .1 percent in the third quarter, compared to the same period last year.

IBM experienced 12.3 percent decline in revenue growth, though it clocked the highest revenue in the market for the quarter at US$3.4 billion. Hewlett-Packard and Fujitsu saw their revenue decline 15.1 percent and 10.8 percent, respectively. Dell Computer was the only vendor with a single-digit revenue decline of 5.1 percent among the top 5 vendors, Gartner said.

Compared to the same quarter last year, overall server revenue worldwide dropped 15.5 percent while shipment dipped 17.1 percent in the third quarter.

Despite the decline, Jeffrey Hewitt, Gartner's research vice president, said in the report the server market was "stabilizing" as both revenue and shipment indicated sequential revenue growth.

"Looking at the third quarter results from the sequential perspective, they showed an increase of 10.2 percent in revenue and 13.8 percent in shipment when compared to the second quarter of this year," said Hewitt.

In terms of server shipment, HP retained its worldwide lead with a market share of 32.1 percent, said Gartner, adding that the vendor's performance was primarily driven by its ProLiant brands.

Dell's shipment was second largest at 22.8 percent, while IBM came in third at 12.8 percent. Sun held a market share of 2.6, losing its third-quarter 2008 fourth position to Fujitsu which grabbed a 3.5 percent market share.

Sun held a 3.5 percent market share in terms of server shipment in the third quarter of last year.

European regulators last month extended the deadline to review the Oracle-Sun merger. The delays, Oracle said, are proving costly for the company and Sun's customers "do not benefit from the continued uncertainty and delay".