The Microsoft Windows NT workstation market failed to kill off its Unix rivals last year as Sun Microsystems enjoyed a bumper 1999 for its Unix desktops, according to figures released by IDC.
Unit shipments of Sun's Unix workstations grew 11 per cent last year to capture 57 per cent of the global Unix workstation market in 1999. Much of this was of its Ultra 5 and Ultra 10 systems.
The traditional Unix workstation market had been expected to slow down due to the growing strength of the NT market, commented Tom Copeland, IDC's vice president of workstation research, but the number of Unix units shipped worldwide increased slightly to 609,428.
He said: "The focus for most vendors has been on maintaining their existing customer base. Sun, however, is aggressively working to increase its business by tapping into new application segments. Sun's success in internet development accounts has done much to slow the migration from Unix to NT-based systems."
Hewlett Packard retained the number two spot with 14.5 per cent market share, and IBM came third with 13 per cent of the Unix workstation market. The remaining share included SGI and Compaq.
Despite the excitement over Unix, shipments of Windows NT workstations remained strong in 1999, but cooled off from the rapid growth in 1997 and 1998 as the market begins to reach maturity, according to IDC.
Dell captured the number one position in shipments of branded NT workstations after being in the market for a little over two years. It shipped 25 per cent of the total one million units sold worldwide last year. Hewlett Packard dropped to second place, but remained number one in Europe. HP's unit shipment fell 25 per cent from 1998, but still comprised 23 per cent of the worldwide workstation market.
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