Worldwide server revenues surpassed $11.8bn (£6.15bn) in the third quarter of 2004, a 6% increase over the third quarter of 2003, according to a survey by market analyst Gartner.
Gartner said the server market was still being driven primarily by x86s, along with the acceptance of Linux in additional application areas in the enterprise space. Gartner defines x86 servers as both 32-bit and 64-bit devices.
The emergence of Intel's EM64T processor to compete with AMD's Opteron helped drive take-up in 64-bit technology. The 64-bit market grew 14% in revenue and 18% in shipments worldwide in the quarter.
By contrast, Risc systems were the only CPU category that showed a year-on-year decline, with revenue down 10% to $4bn in the third quarter of 2004.
IBM held its lead based on server revenue, with its market share remaining at 32%. Dell enjoyed the biggest growth, increasing its revenue by 17% and coming in third behind HP in terms of total revenues for the quarter.
In Europe, the Middle East and Africa, server revenues reached $3.5bn in the third quarter of 2004, a 3% increase over the third quarter of 2003. Shipments totalled 468,000 units, a 19% increase.
In total, 1.6 million units were shipped in the third quarter of 2004, a 16.3% increase over the same period in 2003. HP bettered all other suppliers, shipping 468,924 units. Dell experienced the strongest growth rate among the top five suppliers, with shipments increasing 25% over last year.