Leading graphics chipset manufacturer NVIDIA has edged into profit in its third quarter results, after revenues rose more sharply than expected, and projections for the coming quarter are also strong.
A profit of $6.4 million on revenue of $486.1 million was reported for the quarter, compared with a net loss of $48.6 million on revenues of $430 million in the same period last year.
This was well ahead of analyst expectations, which had settled on a sales figure of under $480 million according to research conducted by Reuters, and although the projections for the fourth quarter are flat - with $486 million in sales predicted - this is also ahead of analyst expectations, which had called for a very slight sales decline.
"NVIDIA had a solid quarter and our business fundamentals have turned the corner," according to CEO Jen-Hsun Huang. The company's balance sheet is certainly healthier than ever, with no debts and over half a billion US dollars in cash balance.
However, the company faces stronger competition than ever in the graphics chipset market from rival ATI, which is still very much a David to NVIDIA's Goliath, but has been impressing reviewers and hardcore users alike with its more recent Radeon graphics cards, which offer better performance at a lower price than NVIDIA's range.
The company has also been edged out of the console market by ATI, which recently confirmed that it has won the contract to design the graphics unit for Microsoft's next console (the Xbox 2 or Xbox Next, depending on who you ask), as well as having a long-term technology development agreement with Nintendo.
However, within the PC arena NVIDIA's partners are an impressive list; the company's chipsets are used in machines provided by the likes of IBM, Dell, Gateway and Apple, which is effectively a Who's Who of the world's major suppliers of home PC systems.