Worldwide shipments of computer graphics chips climbed to unexpected levels in 2009, with annual growth projected to continue through 2011, according to Jon Peddie Research. Shipments increased 14% year-over-year during 2009, reaching 425.4 million units in "an amazing comeback, in this year of retrenching and recession."

The firm forecasts that rate to double this year, and slowing to 10.3% in 2011. In the final quarter of 2009, Intel headed the pack with 55.2% market share, a 7.5% increase on-year, followed by Nvidia with 24.3%, down 6.3%, and AMD held 19.9%, up 0.6%.

Intel's gain is the result of strong Atom sales and growth in the desktop segment, while AMD's boost stems from the integrated notebook segment. Interestingly, AMD supposedly lost market share in discrete desktop and notebook graphics because of the 40nm shortage, while Nvidia picked up a little share in the discrete desktop sector.