Report: Intel Increases Lead in Graphics Market Share

So you consider yourself a power user, and as such, you wouldn't be caught dead and rotting with integrated graphics, right? Fair enough, but remember you're part of an elite bunch. For every PC user like yourself, there are scores of others who are content to surf the Web, fire off emails, and even load a casual game or two without dropping several hundred dollars on a discrete graphics card.

It's because of these users that Intel claims the lion's share of the graphics market. According to a new report from Jon Peddie Research, Intel increased its lead over Nvidia and AMD in the 3rd quarter and now has a grasp on 55.6 percent of the market, compared to 53.4 percent during the last quarter. Intel was able to do this despite the onslaught of Apple's iPad.

"No one knows how much cannibalization there is in tablets, but the numbers are relatively small," noted Intel President and CEO Paul Otellini.

Meanwhile, AMD's shares slipped from 25 percent last quarter to 22.3 percent in the third, a decline AMD attributed to weakened demand and OEMs letting their GPU inventory run down rather than being left stuck with old parts. These factors didn't seem to affect Nvidia, which increased its share from 20.7 percent to the 21.2 percent during the same time period.

And then there's Matrox, which showed a whopping 102.5 percent year-on-year growth rate. Don't call it a comeback, folks. No seriously, don't -- putting that year-on-year number in perspective, Matrox only claims 0.1 percent of the graphics market.

The real measuring stick for all companies involved might come in the fourth quarter. AMD just recently launched its Radeon HD 6800 series, which it will follow with its Cayman cards later this year (HD 6900 series), while Nvidia countered by cutting prices of its GeForce GTX 470 and 460 cards. Nvidia also has a GTX 580 videocard in the manufacturing pipeline.