Server Sales Defy Recession - InformationWeek
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8/25/2008
01:33 PM
Lamont Wood
Lamont Wood
Commentary
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Server Sales Defy Recession

Servers have proven to be must-have items even in hard timeswhile buyers may be keeping their wallets closed in other parts of the economy, they are wide open in the server market, according to a recent report from Gartner Inc.

Servers have proven to be must-have items even in hard timeswhile buyers may be keeping their wallets closed in other parts of the economy, they are wide open in the server market, according to a recent report from Gartner Inc.Worldwide, server sales were up 12.2 percent (to 2.3 million units) during the second quarter of 2008, compared to same quarter in 2007. (Due to falling prices, however, revenue from sales was up only 5.7 percent, to $13.8 billion.)

The big sales driver, said the report, was an upswing in demand for replacement x86 servers, plus various data center build-outs. Bucking the trend was sales of RISC-Itanium UNIX servers, which fell 7.9 percent in terms of shipments.

IBM was the lead vendor in terms of revenue, and saw solid increases in sales of its System p and System z brands, although IBM server brands did not do so well. Hewlett-Packard was the leader in terms of unit shipments, followed by Dell and IBM.

The growth in server shipments pretty much paralleled PC sales, which were up 16 percent worldwide in 2Q08, as Gartner reported in July. However, most of the growth was in emerging markets, while growth in the US market amounted to only 4.2 percent. Additionally, there were steep price declines in most markets, with laptop prices beginning to resemble desktop prices.

Counting all IT spending (hardware, software, services, and telecommunications) global spending is expected to rise 8 percent this year, to $3.4 trillion, Gartner has also reported. Hardware is up 7 percent, software and services are both up 10 percent, and telecommunications is up 8 percent.

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