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IBM squeaked by Hewlett-Packard to maintain its top position in worldwide server revenue during the first quarter this year, according to a new report.

Technology research firm Gartner said today, while both companies relied on an x86 server sales rebound from the fourth quarter of 2006, IBM enjoyed a 14.3 per cent boost of its high-end Unix servers from the same quarter last year.

Gartner Veep Jeffrey Hewitt said overall x86 server sales took a hit in the fourth quarter of 2006 due to lengthy sales cycles, following a period of rapid technology transition.

“As we had predicted, this constraint was less about virtualization and was only a temporary issue as evidenced by the fact that this part of the market returned to growth in the first quarter," Hewitt said.

Dell, Sun and Fujitsu rounded out the major players in server revenue during the first quarter.

  1. IBM: $3.83bn Q1 revenue, 29.8 per cent market share
  2. HP: $3.64bn Q1 revenue, 28.8 per cent market share
  3. Dell: $1.44bn Q1 revenue, 11.2 per cent market share
  4. Sun: $1.37bn Q1 revenue, 10.3 per cent market share
  5. Fujitsu: $698m Q1 revenue, 5.4 per cent market share

From the fourth quarter 2006, IBM's revenue increased 8.4 per cent; HP, 5.4 per cent; Dell, 10.3 per cent; Sun, 2.2 per cent; and Fujitsu suffered a 7.7 per cent market share loss.

Worldwide server revenue totaled 12.9 billion for the quarter, climbing 4.5 per cent over the same quarter last year.

HP remained on top in terms of server unit shipments, with almost 634,000 units sent out during the first quarter. The company took 30 per cent of market shipments, the largest slice of the pie its had since 2002.

Dell took second place with nearly 446,850 shipped, claiming 21.1 per cent of server shipments.

IBM remains in third with 295,175 units. Shipments slipped 1.1 per cent from last quarter. IBM's share during the quarter was 14 per cent.

Fujitsu shipped about 81,000 units for 3.8 per cent of the market, and Sun shipped 79.000 units for 3.7 per cent.

Worldwide server shipments for the first quarter of 2007 increased 6 per cent over the same quarter last year, totaling over 2.1 million units. ®

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