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Global sales of new servers were US $55.1 billion in 2015

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March 14, 2016

According to IDC, for all of 2015, total worldwide sales of new servers were reported as US $55.1 billion. The numbers are slightly higher than what most industry analysts had predicted.

Revenue was 8.4 percent more and 4.9 percent more shipments were made than recorded in 2014, according to market analyst firm IDC's Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker.

IDC added that the cloud is driving up server sales, as cloud operators continue to build out their data centers.

Business is helping mid-range servers to grow, thanks to “enterprise investment in scalable systems for virtualization and consolidation,”IDC asserted.

Only at the high end do things look a little slower, and even then only because buyers knew that IBM had new Z-series machines ready to roll in early 2016 which made for a sluggish end to 2015.

IDC's Q4 2015 data is the first quarter in which it says IBM's and Lenovo's growth rates are not impacted by the former selling its x86 business to Lenovo.

So the immediate question is: how can Big Blue still be in the 3rd spot even though it's exited the x86 business?

IDC thinks that IBM “experienced strong growth for POWER Systems and double-digit growth for its z System mainframes in the quarter.”

Across the year, however, “Non-x86 servers experienced a revenue decline of 5.4 percent year over year to $2.9 billion.”

IBM leads the industry with 75.8 percent more revenue share of non-x86 servers and even managed “year-over-year revenue increase of 8.9 percent when compared with the fourth quarter of 2014.”

The news is less good for ARM servers, which IDC says experienced falling sales compared to the same period in 2014. HPE still dominates the ARM server segment, and it appears it might continue to do so for all of 2016 according to IDC's view on things.

Overall, buyers in the Asia/Pacific region are the planet's most active, with Chinese shoppers alone spending about 15.6 percent more than in 2014.

EMEA and U.S. buyers clocked up just 5 percent and 7.9 percent of the increase respectively.

The market research firm says that growth in Asia saw China's top four server-makers (Inspur, Huawei, Lenovo and Sugon) “grew their combined revenues by 19.5 percent on a year-over-year basis” thanks to strong domestic growth.

Lenovo still managed to clock up those sales results even as it ingested IBM's x86 business.

Source: IDC Market Research.

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