Tech Market Snapshot: Global server revenue up, robotics and detachable tablets set for growth

We roundup the latest news from IT analysts and firms to see which tech categories have been doing well, which haven’t, and what’s forecast to be big in the near future.

Worldwide server revenue Grew 8.2% in Q4 2015
In Q4 2015, worldwide server shipments increased 8.2 per cent year over year, while revenue grew 9.2 per cent from the fourth quarter of 2014, according to Gartner. In 2015, worldwide server shipments grew 9.9 per cent, and server revenue increased 10.1 per cent.

"The real growth driver for the quarter in terms of absolute value was the other vendors category," said Jeffrey Hewitt, research vice president at Gartner.

"This collection of unspecified vendors that includes original design manufacturers (ODMs), like Quanta and Wistron, contributed over $750 million in revenue and over 170,000 server unit shipments for the period.

He added: “This demonstrates that the growth of hyperscale data centres, like those of Facebook, Google and Microsoft, continues to be the leading contributor to physical server increases globally.”

Detachable tablets set to grow to 30% of the tablet market by 2020
Worldwide tablet shipments will drop to 195 million units in 2016, down 5.9 per cent from 2015, according to IDC, but looking beyond 2016, the analyst expects the overall market to return to positive growth driven by growing demand for detachable devices.

The category brings together slate tablets and PCs and is expected to grow from 16.6 million shipments in 2015 to 63.8 million in 2020.

"Beyond the growing demand for detachable devices, we’re also witnessing an increase in competition within this segment that will help drive design, innovation, and a decline in average prices," said Jean Philippe Bouchard, research director, Tablets, IDC.

“At the latest Mobile World Congress, we saw new entrants, like Alcatel and Huawei, coming from the mobile space and expanding their portfolio to address the demand for detachables. Everyone in the industry recognises that traditional personal computers like desktops and notebooks will potentially be replaced by detachables in the coming years and this is why we will see a lot of new products being introduced this year.”

EMEA spending on robotics to reach $23.8 billion in 2019
This week, IDC has also identified robotics as one of six ‘innovation accelerators’ that will drive digital transformation by opening new revenue streams and changing the way work is performed.

The growth in robotic adoption is being driven mainly by increasing labor costs, shortage of skilled labors, declining prices of robotic systems, and by strategic national initiatives.

IDC forecasts the EMEA spending on robotics and related services will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 13 per cent from nearly $14.6 billion in 2015 to $23.8 billion in 2019.

Low-end smartphone panels up 10% in March
Prices of panels for smartphone displays were in an uptrend from the start of the fourth quarter of 2015 to just before the Chinese New Year holidays this year, according to the latest report from WitsView, a division of TrendForce.

WitsView’s survey finds that the price increases have been concentrated in the segment of panel products for low-end devices. For instance, the prices of 5-inch IPS panels, including products with FWVGA and qHD resolutions, have seen the largest price increase within the application, up almost 10 per cent from February. Strong demand from China’s export markets and tight supply caused by the closure of a Gen-4.5 fab owned by Chunghwa Picture Tube attributed to the price increase.

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