Despite fierce price competition, which hurt second-tier players, both ASUS and Gigabyte have been steep declines in motherboard shipments in 2015. DigiTimes writes both motherboard giants are expected to ship around 17 million motherboards in 2015, a drop of 10 percent versus 2014. For many of the industry's smaller players, the drop in shipments will be much worse.
The site also heard rumors that ECS will turn its focus away from its own-brand motherboard business, and that Chinese motherboard maker Onda may quit the market entirely. Half a year ago, DigiTimes wrote ECS planned to exit the motherboard market, but ECS promptly dispelled that rumor.
Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), Micro-Star International (MSI) and Biostar are seeing losses from their motherboard businesses, while China-based Onda reportedly will gradually phase out from the industry in 2016. The sources believe the global motherboard shipments will drop another 10% on year in 2016, forcing more motherboard players to quit.
Asustek and Gigabyte each shipped about 8.5-9 million motherboards in the first half thanks to their strong marketing and price cut promotions. However, Intel's releases of its new Skylake processors did not boost consumers' demand as expected and the two players only shipped less than five million motherboards in the third quarter. Since their shipments are unlikely to dramatic sequential growths in the fourth quarter, their annual shipments are only expected to reach between 17-17.5 million units each.