Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

Intel Gains Chip Share, Hard-Drive Sales Surge, iSuppli Says

The market for microprocessors has reached what market research firm iSuppli is describing as a stalemate in its quarterly survey of market share statistics. Shifts in share are being measured in tenths of a percent between Intel, Advanced Micro Devices and assorted others. Intel gained slightly in the third quarter from the same period last year to 80.1 percent, while Advanced Micro Devices lost a little less than a full percentage point with 11.3 percent. Good news for all concerned: Revenues are up 23 percent overall.

Note that iSuppli counts microprocessors differently than some of the other research firms. Its “other” category includes not only PC chip also-rans like Via Technologies, but also general purpose RISC chips like IBM’s Power chips that go into servers.

There’s better news, however, for the beaten-down hard-drive industry. After seeing shipments decline through the first half of the year, fourth-quarter shipments are up, as are revenues, iSuppli says. It’s clearly the result of the holiday-season demand, but welcome news, especially in light of all the worries that tablets–like Apple’s iPad–which use flash memory for storage, would whack hard-drive sales. (Though, as Digital Daily’s John Paczkowski noted this morning, the hard-drive guys still have lots to fear from tablets.)

Western Digital is holding on to its top spot as the world’s leading supplier, edging out Seagate, which has seen its share of troubles lately.

Seagate failed to come to terms with TPG Capital last month on a plan that would have taken the company private, and also spurned a takeover offer from Western Digital. Last week it moved to refinance more than $2 billion in debt, more than $500 million of which is due before the end of the year, with a combination of bonds and bank loans.