Wednesday, February 28th 2018

"Where Are My Graphics Cards?" - 3 Million Sold to Cryptocurrency Miners in 2017

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Raevenlord
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The title of this piece is both question and answer, though users that keep up with PC-related news knew the answer already. Jon Peddie Research, in a new report, pegs the number of total graphics cards sold to miners at a pretty respectable 3 million units (worth some $776 million). That's some 3 million gamers that could be enjoying video games on their PCs right now, or which would be able to enjoy them at a much lower price that they had to recently pay to have the privilege.

AMD has been the primary benefactor here - its GPU market share went up by 8.1%, while NVIDIA's dropped by 6% and Intel's by 1.9% (the fact that Intel's graphics processing units come embedded in the company's processors helps keep that number stable). As it is, attachment rates of GPUs to systems was over 100% at 136%, the result of miners buying more cards per system in an effort to maximize profits. Jon Peddie thinks that gaming will still be the key player to drive GPU sales, though "augmented by the demand from cryptocurrency miners." The firm also expects demand for GPUs to slacken, coeteris paribus, due to "increasing utilities costs and supply and demand forces that drive up AIB prices." However, for those looking for prices to drop before upgrading their system, the news aren't rosy: the article states that pricing will not drop in the foreseeable future, so owners of GPUs that can actually mine already are being encouraged to mine while not gaming, so as to try and offset the markups in the current GPU offerings.
Overall GPU shipments in the fourth quarter of 2017 actually decreased 1.5% from the previous quarter, though JPR said that was due to normal seasonal activity. But even with miners' help to drive sales, overall GPU market shipments declined 4.8 percent - the only actual positive trend in that market were the actual discrete desktop GPUs.
Some key highlights JPR calls attention to are as follows:
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