Infineon Technologies has the world's number two memory maker spot in its sights, according to preliminary third-quarter findings from researcher iSuppli.
The latest results show that the gap between long-time number two player Micron and third-place Infineon stands at just 1.4 per cent in Q3; the gap was six per cent a year ago.
Infineon recorded Q3 DRam sales of $831m, against Micron's $903m. Infineon reported a strong rise in shipments for the quarter while Micron continued to post modest growth. At current growth rates, Infineon could be the new number two by early in the new year.
"Just one year ago, the companies were separated by six percentage points of market share, but by Q2 2003 the gap had shrunk to 2.2 percentage points," said Nam Hyung Kim, senior memory analyst at iSuppli.
"Infineon's market share advances were driven by a robust 26 per cent increase in unit shipments for the quarter. In contrast, Micron's shipment growth advanced by only six per cent."
Chris Austwick, managing director of VTEC, said: "We have seen the supply of Micron product in the UK become less and less available. Infineon, on the other hand, has been making a really big push and you can see it in the marketplace.
"I wouldn't think that the recent Intel investment in Micron will change its fortunes too much because it's not just about money. It is about Micron's distribution network and how it picks its markets.
"It may be big with tier-one PC companies, but it has to work out how to attract more white box PC builders."
Samsung remained dominant in the number-one slot with a market share of 27.1 per cent, although this was down 0.6 per cent on Q2.
The decrease in DRam market share was put down to the company refocusing it's efforts on boosting production and sales in the Flash memory space. Samsung's share of the DRam market has declined for three consecutive quarters.
Troubled Hynix did not seem to be suffering too much from the tariffs imposed by the US and European Union, recording Q3 growth of 35 per cent, the highest of the top four players. Keeping it in fourth place, its market share crept up by 0.4 per cent to 15.1 per cent.
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