Competition in the motherboard industry is expected to gradually turn to focus on each player's brand power and channel relationships as newly developed technologies are becoming similar, according to sources from channel retailers in China.
With Intel having released its new 9-series chipsets including the Z97 and H97, motherboard players have been aggressively pushing into the mid-range and high-end gaming industry, looking to boost gross margin performance and promote their technology leadership. The moves have created strong pressure on Asustek Computer, which has been occupying the market for a while.
Currently, Asustek and Gigabyte Technology are competing fiercely in China's tier-1 to tier-3 cities, while their competition in tier-4 to tier-6 cities is evenly matched. For 2014, Gigabyte is trying to raise the shipment proportion of its gaming series products and its cooperation with China-based Tencent Games is expected to help steal demand from Asustek's ROG series.
As for Micro-Star International (MSI) and ASRock, raising profitability has become their priority for 2014 since the two firms are unlikely to increase their shipments significantly.