The DRam market could be slowing down despite the recent rise in sales of computer chips, according to the latest market research from iSuppli.
Although the semiconductor market celebrated its best September in years, DRam failed to shine.
Figures from the World Semiconductor Sales Statistics body showed that while chip sales grew by 6.5 per cent for the month and by 13.7 per cent for the third quarter, the DRam market faltered in September, despite experiencing a strong July and August.
ISuppli noted that average selling prices had flattened out and megabit shipments had risen only marginally in what is traditionally a very strong time for the DRam market.
"Average DRam prices in October actually decreased and unit shipments didn't appear to recover with the historical growth pattern," said Nam Hyung Kim, a senior analyst at iSuppli.
"The major culprit behind this deceleration will be a slowing in the rate of increase of unit shipments, despite the fact that PC makers are buying DRam for their pre-Christmas build."
Falling average selling prices have also been noticed by DRameXchange, which has recorded a gradual decline in prices over the past few weeks.
UK memory distributor Memory Plus is also finding things quieter than expected. Paul Stevens, the company's integration business unit manager, said: "We are seeing the same thing; the larger OEMs have been cashing in recently by dumping a lot of stock, but I expect prices will steady up as the quarter proceeds.
"People were expecting a rise in sales for the Christmas rush but it has not materialised. I can't see a big rush happening now because most of the pre-Christmas PC orders are in."
Q3 has been one of the best in recent times for the DRam industry, with revenues rising by 34 per cent sequentially. ISuppli has predicted that Q4 will not be so strong, expecting growth of just 15 per cent, less than half that of Q3.
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