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IBM’s Server Revenues Slip to HP’s Advantage

Gartner says HP’s server revenue hit $3.4 billion, representing 31.5% of the total market

Worldwide server shipments were up 23% year-over-year in the first quarter, according to Gartner's tally, while harder-to-come-up revenues were only up 6%.

Gartner says growth on a worldwide level is back thanks to industry standard servers, but not - lest anyone get carried away - to 2008 levels.

HP, as HP was quick to point out, wrested the lead in server revenues away from its nemesis IBM, which has traditionally held that title.

Gartner says HP's server revenue hit $3.4 billion, representing 31.5% of the total market, up 2.7 points year-over-year.

IBM fell from grace with a 2.1% revenue decline to $3 billion, 28.4% of the market, which Gartner ascribed to anticipation of both new mainframe and Unix products so obviously IBM can stage a comeback.

Of the top five global vendors, Dell and Fujitsu also had revenue increases in the first quarter.

Dell perked up a bit with $1.67 billion (15.6% of the market) versus $1.23 billion (12.2%) last year while Oracle's name appears in the lists for the first time complements of its Sun acquisition, although Sun's revenues were down a nasty 38.7% year-over-year to $597.9 million from $975.5 million, representing a shrinking piece of the pie: 5.6% to last year's 9.6%.

HP remained first in server shipments, up 26.6% to 672,094 units, a tickle attributed to the performance of its commodity boxes. From a unit perspective HP owned 31.8% of the market, up about a point.

It'll tell you its G7 generation of Westmere/Nehalem and Mangy-Cours machines are all superior to IBM's and Dell's capable on average of 22:1 consolidation while its rivals can only manage 15:1 and it will happily point out that Cisco remains a mere "other," not registering significantly on the charts a year into its devil-may-care plunge into servers.

Of the top five vendors in server shipments worldwide, Dell, Fujitsu and IBM also posted increases in units for the first quarter. Dell took second place with 510,452, up 33.5%. IBM was third with 268,010, up 16% and Fujitsu was fourth with 77,613, up 31.5%. Oracle, poor thing, was down to 42,528 systems, off 29.5%. Respective market shares came in at24.1%, 12.7%, 3.7% and 2%. Other folks lapped up 25.8% of the market.

Gartner found emerging regions that were expected to grow such as Asia-Pacific did, while the U.S. produced better-than-expected results with shipments up 28.6%. Other countries and regions were a mixed bag.

Garden-variety x86 servers were up 25.3% in units, 32.1% in revenue. RISC/Itanium Unix servers dropped 28.5% in units and 26.9% in revenue, and Gartner's "other" category, mostly mainframes, fell 15.1% in revenue, which helps explain why IBM is so touchy about competition.

Blade servers had the strongest growth of any form factor, up 23.7% in units and a handsome 40.7% in vendor revenue.

Latin America produced the sweetest returns, with vendor revenue growth up 27.9%. Japan posted a revenue decline of 0.7%.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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