IDC Forecasts 7 Percent Annual Growth for Global HPC Market

By Alex Woodie

July 9, 2013

The global HPC market has recovered from the great recession and is now poised to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.8 to 7.8 percent through 2016, with growth at the high end supercomputer market and China leading the way, the research firm IDC said at the recent ISC 2013 event in Germany.

While the overall HPC market has picked up where it left off in 2009 following the collapse of the global economy, not all segments of the marketplace are equal. For instance, growth in the supercomputer segment, which IDC defines as systems $500,000 and up, didn’t even see a blip despite the economic turmoil.

“There was no recession in supercomputers, but the lower half of the market shrunk. It got cut almost in half,” IDC analyst Earl Joseph said during a presentation at ISC 2013. Growth of smaller HPC systems just resumed during the first quarter of this year, he noted. The combined workgroup and department HPC system segments are expected to grow from just shy of about $5 billion in 2012 to just shy of about $7 billion by 2016, according to IDC figures.

There are also important differences in HPC system spending according to geography. China and Germany have demonstrated the most consistent “lock step” growth in HPC systems over the last few years, Joseph said; growth in those two countries has been primarily driven by supercomputer sales.

The HPC market in France, which is about the same size now as China’s, has been flat since 2008, at just under $600 billion in spending per year. Were it not for healthy growth in supercomputers, France would have shown a net decline in HPC spending.

Joseph commended the commitments that European politicians have made to HPC, including the launch of two €1 billion-plus research projects into modeling brain functions and graphene, which is an allotrope of carbon. “In my personal view, this is one of the best strategies that can take place: Pick out a couple application areas that you have strong expertise in already that you feel you can lead the world for the next decade, and really put your money against those,” he said.

The HPC market in the United States is still the world’s largest, but it also has not fully recovered from the great recession. According to IDC figures, the overall HPC market in the US went from just shy of $5 billion in spending in 2008 to about $4.6 billion in 2011, the last year for which IDC provided figures. Sales of supercomputers, of course, have proved resilient over that stretch, and grew more than 50 percent, to $1.8 billion in 2011.

Despite the global growth in HPC systems, the number of HPC systems actually shipping has declined. This, of course, is due to the effect that strong sales of supercomputers is having. “Everybody is buying larger systems,” Joseph says. “A lot of that is related to putting accelerators in…[and] a lot more memory.”

In the future, IDC expects HPC computing to benefit from the intersection of the “four pillars” of macro computing trends, which include mobile broadband, social business, big data/analytics, and cloud services. Together, these “four pillars” make up the “third platform” that is in the process of superseding the computing world’s first two platforms, mainframes and client-server computing, respectively.

“HPC has a major role in a number of these,” Joseph said. “We’re seeing HPC used by companies like Paypal and Geico–traditional places where you wouldn’t see technical computing, are now moving to HPC.” The advent of cloud-based HPC services is also spreading the use of technical computing to organizations that weren’t traditional HPC users.

Once an organization goes HPC, they rarely go back. The IDC cited a worldwide study that found 97 percent of companies that had adopted supercomputing said “they could no longer complete or survive without it.”

It’s no surprise, then, that many nations around the world have made investments in supercomputing a priority. The IDC sites a 2009 speech by Russia president Dmitry Medvedev, where he warned that, without more investment in supercomputers, “Russian products will no longer be competitive or of interest to potential buyers.”

Joseph also commended South Korea for basically making HPC investments a matter of law. “If Korea is to survive in this increasingly competitive world, it must not neglect nurturing the supercomputer industry, which has emerged as a new growth driver in advanced countries,” the IDC quotes Rep. Chung Doo-un of South Korea’s Grand National Party as saying in June 2010.

To out compute, the firm says, is to out compete. However, the IDC also knocks the US for not investing enough in building exascale-class systems. The lone quote in IDC’s slide deck from President Barack Obama on the matter of HPC spending was in his 2011 State of the Union address, when the he noted China’s growth in supercomputers.

Related Articles

Top Supercomputer Signals Growth of Chinese HPC Industry

IDC Talks Convergence in High Performance Data Analysis

Full Details Uncovered on Chinese Top Supercomputer

Subscribe to HPCwire's Weekly Update!

Be the most informed person in the room! Stay ahead of the tech trends with industy updates delivered to you every week!

Researchers Scale COSMO Climate Code to 4888 GPUs on Piz Daint

October 17, 2017

Effective global climate simulation, sorely needed to anticipate and cope with global warming, has long been computationally challenging. Two of the major obstacles are the needed resolution and prolonged time to compute Read more…

By John Russell

Student Cluster Competition Coverage New Home

October 16, 2017

Hello computer sports fans! This is the first of many (many!) articles covering the world-wide phenomenon of Student Cluster Competitions. Finally, the Student Cluster Competition coverage has come to its natural home: H Read more…

By Dan Olds

UCSD Web-based Tool Tracking CA Wildfires Generates 1.5M Views

October 16, 2017

Tracking the wildfires raging in northern CA is an unpleasant but necessary part of guiding efforts to fight the fires and safely evacuate affected residents. One such tool – Firemap – is a web-based tool developed b Read more…

By John Russell

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

Transforming Genomic Analytics with HPC-Accelerated Insights

Advancements in the field of genomics are revolutionizing our understanding of human biology, rapidly accelerating the discovery and treatment of genetic diseases, and dramatically improving human health. Read more…

Exascale Imperative: New Movie from HPE Makes a Compelling Case

October 13, 2017

Why is pursuing exascale computing so important? In a new video – Hewlett Packard Enterprise: Eighteen Zeros – four HPE executives, a prominent national lab HPC researcher, and HPCwire managing editor Tiffany Trader Read more…

By John Russell

Student Cluster Competition Coverage New Home

October 16, 2017

Hello computer sports fans! This is the first of many (many!) articles covering the world-wide phenomenon of Student Cluster Competitions. Finally, the Student Read more…

By Dan Olds

Intel Delivers 17-Qubit Quantum Chip to European Research Partner

October 10, 2017

On Tuesday, Intel delivered a 17-qubit superconducting test chip to research partner QuTech, the quantum research institute of Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) in the Netherlands. The announcement marks a major milestone in the 10-year, $50-million collaborative relationship with TU Delft and TNO, the Dutch Organization for Applied Research, to accelerate advancements in quantum computing. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Fujitsu Tapped to Build 37-Petaflops ABCI System for AIST

October 10, 2017

Fujitsu announced today it will build the long-planned AI Bridging Cloud Infrastructure (ABCI) which is set to become the fastest supercomputer system in Japan Read more…

By John Russell

HPC Chips – A Veritable Smorgasbord?

October 10, 2017

For the first time since AMD's ill-fated launch of Bulldozer the answer to the question, 'Which CPU will be in my next HPC system?' doesn't have to be 'Whichever variety of Intel Xeon E5 they are selling when we procure'. Read more…

By Dairsie Latimer

Delays, Smoke, Records & Markets – A Candid Conversation with Cray CEO Peter Ungaro

October 5, 2017

Earlier this month, Tom Tabor, publisher of HPCwire and I had a very personal conversation with Cray CEO Peter Ungaro. Cray has been on something of a Cinderell Read more…

By Tiffany Trader & Tom Tabor

Intel Debuts Programmable Acceleration Card

October 5, 2017

With a view toward supporting complex, data-intensive applications, such as AI inference, video streaming analytics, database acceleration and genomics, Intel i Read more…

By Doug Black

OLCF’s 200 Petaflops Summit Machine Still Slated for 2018 Start-up

October 3, 2017

The Department of Energy’s planned 200 petaflops Summit computer, which is currently being installed at Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility, is on track t Read more…

By John Russell

US Exascale Program – Some Additional Clarity

September 28, 2017

The last time we left the Department of Energy’s exascale computing program in July, things were looking very positive. Both the U.S. House and Senate had pas Read more…

By Alex R. Larzelere

How ‘Knights Mill’ Gets Its Deep Learning Flops

June 22, 2017

Intel, the subject of much speculation regarding the delayed, rewritten or potentially canceled “Aurora” contract (the Argonne Lab part of the CORAL “ Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Reinders: “AVX-512 May Be a Hidden Gem” in Intel Xeon Scalable Processors

June 29, 2017

Imagine if we could use vector processing on something other than just floating point problems.  Today, GPUs and CPUs work tirelessly to accelerate algorithms Read more…

By James Reinders

NERSC Scales Scientific Deep Learning to 15 Petaflops

August 28, 2017

A collaborative effort between Intel, NERSC and Stanford has delivered the first 15-petaflops deep learning software running on HPC platforms and is, according Read more…

By Rob Farber

Oracle Layoffs Reportedly Hit SPARC and Solaris Hard

September 7, 2017

Oracle’s latest layoffs have many wondering if this is the end of the line for the SPARC processor and Solaris OS development. As reported by multiple sources Read more…

By John Russell

US Coalesces Plans for First Exascale Supercomputer: Aurora in 2021

September 27, 2017

At the Advanced Scientific Computing Advisory Committee (ASCAC) meeting, in Arlington, Va., yesterday (Sept. 26), it was revealed that the "Aurora" supercompute Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Google Releases Deeplearn.js to Further Democratize Machine Learning

August 17, 2017

Spreading the use of machine learning tools is one of the goals of Google’s PAIR (People + AI Research) initiative, which was introduced in early July. Last w Read more…

By John Russell

GlobalFoundries Puts Wind in AMD’s Sails with 12nm FinFET

September 24, 2017

From its annual tech conference last week (Sept. 20), where GlobalFoundries welcomed more than 600 semiconductor professionals (reaching the Santa Clara venue Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Graphcore Readies Launch of 16nm Colossus-IPU Chip

July 20, 2017

A second $30 million funding round for U.K. AI chip developer Graphcore sets up the company to go to market with its “intelligent processing unit” (IPU) in Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Leading Solution Providers

Amazon Debuts New AMD-based GPU Instances for Graphics Acceleration

September 12, 2017

Last week Amazon Web Services (AWS) streaming service, AppStream 2.0, introduced a new GPU instance called Graphics Design intended to accelerate graphics. The Read more…

By John Russell

Nvidia Responds to Google TPU Benchmarking

April 10, 2017

Nvidia highlights strengths of its newest GPU silicon in response to Google's report on the performance and energy advantages of its custom tensor processor. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

EU Funds 20 Million Euro ARM+FPGA Exascale Project

September 7, 2017

At the Barcelona Supercomputer Centre on Wednesday (Sept. 6), 16 partners gathered to launch the EuroEXA project, which invests €20 million over three-and-a-half years into exascale-focused research and development. Led by the Horizon 2020 program, EuroEXA picks up the banner of a triad of partner projects — ExaNeSt, EcoScale and ExaNoDe — building on their work... Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Delays, Smoke, Records & Markets – A Candid Conversation with Cray CEO Peter Ungaro

October 5, 2017

Earlier this month, Tom Tabor, publisher of HPCwire and I had a very personal conversation with Cray CEO Peter Ungaro. Cray has been on something of a Cinderell Read more…

By Tiffany Trader & Tom Tabor

Cray Moves to Acquire the Seagate ClusterStor Line

July 28, 2017

This week Cray announced that it is picking up Seagate's ClusterStor HPC storage array business for an undisclosed sum. "In short we're effectively transitioning the bulk of the ClusterStor product line to Cray," said CEO Peter Ungaro. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Intel Launches Software Tools to Ease FPGA Programming

September 5, 2017

Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) have a reputation for being difficult to program, requiring expertise in specialty languages, like Verilog or VHDL. Easin Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

IBM Advances Web-based Quantum Programming

September 5, 2017

IBM Research is pairing its Jupyter-based Data Science Experience notebook environment with its cloud-based quantum computer, IBM Q, in hopes of encouraging a new class of entrepreneurial user to solve intractable problems that even exceed the capabilities of the best AI systems. Read more…

By Alex Woodie

Intel, NERSC and University Partners Launch New Big Data Center

August 17, 2017

A collaboration between the Department of Energy’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC), Intel and five Intel Parallel Computing Cente Read more…

By Linda Barney

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
Share This