After unusually strong second and third quarters, the desktop graphics card market saw exceptional growth in shipments in the fourth quarter of last year, according to a new report by Jon Peddie Research. The market research firm says unit shipments increased by a staggering 50.3% between Q4 2006 and Q4 2007, and a still-impressive 23% sequentially between Q3 and Q4 2007. The overall value of the desktop graphics card market also increased 46.3% year-over-year, but lower average selling prices actually led to a sequential decrease of 0.6%.
Looking at market share, JPR's numbers suggest that AMD actually lost a fair amount of ground to Nvidia in Q4 despite the arrival of its Radeon HD 3800 series. Nvidia reportedly expanded its slice of the desktop graphics card market from 64% in the third quarter to 71%, leaving AMD with less than a third of all shipments. The report JPR sent us doesn't include any speculation on the cause of Nvidia's gains, but we'd be willing to bet the late October launch of the popular GeForce 8800 GT had something to do with it.