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Market Watch (Q1'2021)

Written By
By Jon Peddie and Robert Dow

JPR’s quarterly report Market Watch gives market share (in units) of all suppliers of graphics chips, integrated, embedded, and discrete worldwide. Historical data is included from Q1’04. Market Watch is supplied in electronic form and includes a written summary of the quarter and an in-depth spreadsheet.

Market Watch is a valuable resource for understanding the PC market providing insight into the capabilities of PCs in use today and coming in the near future.

The latest version of Market Watch is our Q1'2021 Report. 


GPU shipments soar in Q1 year-over-year

The PC GPU market shipments increased by 35% year-to-year and decreased slightly by -.3% from last quarter 

According to a new research report from the analyst firm Jon Peddie Research, the growth of PC-based Graphics Processor Units (GPU) market reached 119 million units in Q1'21 and 38.74% year-over-year. Overall, the installed base of GPUs will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 2.87% during 2020–2025 to reach a total of million units at the end of the forecast period. Over the next five years, the penetration of discrete GPUs (dGPU) in the PC will grow to reach a level of 26%.

As part of its ongoing research on the PC graphics market, Jon Peddie Research (JPR) has released its Market Watch report for the first quarter of 2021. Before 2020, the PC market was showing signs of improvement and settling into a new normal. The weakness of the just-in-time supply-chain was revealed in 2020 and the manufacturers of semiconductors and other components have not been able to scale up to meet the surge in demand and the backlog that was created. Intel’s leading position in the market and their subsequent manufacturing difficulties exacerbated the situation. JPR’s Market Watch report confirms that trend for the first quarter of 2021, but with cautious guidance for the upcoming year. 

AMD's overall market share percentage from last quarter decreased by -0.12%, Intel's market share decreased by -0.5%, and Nvidia's market share increased 0.62%, as indicated in the following chart.

Quarterly shipments and market share percentages and year-to-year results

Overall GPU unit shipments decreased by -0.3% from last quarter, AMD shipments decreased by -1.0%, Intel's shipments decreased by -1.0%, and Nvidia's shipments increased 3.9%.

Quick highlights

  • The GPU's overall attach rate (which includes integrated and discrete GPUs, desktop, notebook, and workstations) to PCs for the quarter was 117%, up 4% from last quarter.
  • The overall PC CPU market decreased by -4% quarter-to-quarter and increased 39% year-to-year.
  • Desktop graphics add-in boards (AIBs that use discrete GPUs) increased by 7% from the last quarter.
  • This quarter saw no change in tablet shipments from last quarter.

The first quarter is typically flat to down compared to the previous quarter. This quarter was down. 0.9% from last quarter which is below the 10year average of 7%

GPUs are traditionally a leading indicator of the market since a GPU goes into every system before the suppliers ship the PC. 

Due the rush to try and equip school children with Chromebooks, combined with the work-at-home rules due to the COVID-19 pandemic, notebook shipments exceeded 89 million units for the quarter—an all-time high. In addition, the year-to-year notebook growth was 49%, the greatest one-year growth on record—this in spite of disruptions in the supply chain. The forecast for Q2’21 is more modest, ~ 4%, but still higher than average. We expect to Chromebooks taper off in 2021 due to school budget limitations.

Jon Peddie, President of JPR, noted, “The risk is that semiconductor suppliers will be lured into over-reaction and believe that suddenly 100s of millions of new users have appeared and the demand will stay high. That’s not only not realistic, it’s also not true—where are they coming from—not this planet?”

Most of the semiconductor vendors are guiding up for the next quarter by an average of 3%.  Some of that guidance is based on normal seasonality, but there is still a Coronavirus impact factor and a hangover in the supply-chain.

A subscription to Market Watch includes 4 reports distributed quarterly, reports consist of a detailed spreadsheet, report highlights include:

  • Worldwide GPU and PC Shipment Volume, 1994 to2025.
  • Detailed worldwide GPU Shipment Volume, 1Q 2001 to date, and forecast to 2025
  • Major suppliers: Detailed market share data on the shipments of AMD, Intel, Nvidia, and others.
  • Market forecasts: a detailed spreadsheet and supporting charts that project the supplier’s shipments over the period 2001 to2025. Projections are split into platforms and GPU types.
  • GPUs: History, status, and analysis.
  • A vision of the future: Built upon a solid foundation of facts, data, and sober analysis, this section pulls together all of the report's findings and paints a vivid picture of where the PC graphics market is headed. 
  • Charts, graphics, tables, and more: Included with this report is an Excel workbook, which contains the data we used to create the charts in this report. The workbook has charts and supplemental information.

Subscribers also get four-hours of consulting time to discuss the market, products, forecast, and any other related issues.

Each quarterly report consists of a written (PDF) narrative about the market and an in-depth spreadsheet with Pivot table.

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Errors and Omissions: We do our best to keep our website current and accurate, but typographical errors occasionally occur. We reserve the right to correct or cancel any orders based on incorrect or erroneous information. For questions about your order, contact robert@jonpeddie.com.