Where Video Stands . . .

XBitLabs has a very interesting article on the video card market.

What it shows is that most video in the PC industry is integrated video, and that the low- and medium-end video cards are slowly being squeezed out of existence.

That doesn’t mean everyone who doesn’t get integrated video is buying one or two $500 cards, though. The article shows that a large majority of video cards these days cluster around the $250 price point, with relatively few above that.

All those premium video card reviews are only aimed at about 5% of the market, so if you feel you aren’t keeping up the Joneses by not buying the high-end cards, that’s not really so. The mainstream price is higher than it was five years ago, but it hasn’t gone that upstream.

These numbers also put projects like Fusion into focus. The perennial king of integrated video is Intel, and that makes it the biggest video provider of them all; it’s all low-end, but the video market is primarily low-end. Its overall marketshare has been creeping up the last few years

Fusion, at least in its initial incarnations, is primarily aimed at moving integrated video from the mobo to the CPU. It won’t be high-end video, but then, that’s where most of the market is, in desktop and especially mobile.

While the standalone video card isn’t quite an endangered species, it will continue its slow relative decline as it drifts away from the mainstream. Whether integrated on the mobo or in the CPU, most will find integrated video good enough. Those gamers on the low-price end will go or stick with consoles, and the twenty-something gamers will buy the standalone cards in a relatively static extra-big niche.


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