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Desktop CPU shipments drop 30% but AMD gains ground on Intel overall

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Desktop PC shipments dropped 30% drop in Q1 2022, which is the largest single-quarter drop in history.
  • PC shipments have seen record-breaking growth during the pandemic as demand has steadily increased.
  • AMD has gained 7% x86 market share over the last year, reaching a total share of 27.7%.

Desktop PC processor shipments fell 30% in Q1 2022, according to Mercury Research's Dean McCarron (via Tom's Hardware). That dip marks the largest decline in a single quarter in history. Across the board, all x86 processor shipments dipped in the quarter except for the IoT/SoC segments.

The drop was due, at least in part, to vendors using up their processor inventories, according to McCarron. Intel was affected more than AMD, according to Mercury Research. AMD's overall x86 CPU market share reached 27.7% in Q1 2022, marking an increase of 7% year-over-year.

AMD also set a record in market share for the mobile and laptop market, reaching 22.5% in the first quarter of 2022. The company's server market share also improved for the 12th straight quarter to 11.6%.

It's important to put these numbers in context. Intel and AMD have set records over the last two years as demand has remained strong. It appears that the drop in CPU shipments is largely related to a lack of supply rather than a lack of interest from consumers and vendors.

AMD vs Intel desktop market share (via Mercury Research)

CategoryQ1 2022Q4 2021Q3 2021Q2 2021Q1 2021
AMD Desktop Unit Share18.3%16.2%17.0%17.1%19.3%
Quarter-over-quarter growth+2.1%-0.8%-0.1%-2.3%+0.1%
Year-over-year growth-1.0%-3.1%-3.1%-2.1%+0.7%

Additionally, while the desktop market saw its largest drop in a quarter ever, other segments saw more promising figures. "In spite of the downturn, the market saw several records set, including record highs for server processor revenue, IoT/semi-custom units and revenue, and a new record high for combined client (desktop and notebook) CPU average selling prices," said McCarron.

"Lower shipments of low-priced entry-level CPUs and strong ramps of new mobile processors (Alder Lake CPUs for Intel and Barcelo and Rembrandt CPUs cores for AMD) resulted in much higher mobile CPU prices, which helped set the record client (combined desktop and notebook) average selling prices of $138, which were up more than 10 percent on quarter and more than 30 percent on year," added McCarron.

On the mobile side of things, AMD also gained market share while overall shipments in the market fell. McCarron pointed to success in the commercial notebook market by AMD as a factor in the company's shipment figures.

AMD vs Intel mobile market share (via Mercury Research)

CategoryQ1 2022Q4 2021Q3 2021Q2 2021Q1 2021
AMD Mobile Unit Share22.5%21.6%22.0%20.0%18.0%
Quarter-over-quarter growth+0.9%-0.4%+2.0%+1.9%-1.0%
Year-over-year growth+4.4%+2.6%+1.8%+0.01%+1.1%

Arguably AMD's biggest success when it comes to CPU shipments was that its overall market share grew 7% year-over-year.

AMD overall x86 market share (via Mercury Research)

CategoryQ1 2022Q4 2021Q3 2021Q2 2021Q1 2021
AMD overall x8627.7%25.6%24.6%22.5%20.7%
Quarter-over-quarter growth+2.1%+1.0%+2.1%+1.8%-1.0%
Year-over-year growth+7%+3.9%+2.2%+4.4%+6.0%

Mercury Research noted that AMD also set a record in the previous quarter when it reached 25.6% overall x86 market share in Q4 2022.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).