South Korea's Samsung has overtaken US rival Intel showed the best market share in the market for the first time. number one position from Intel – the first time Intel has been toppled since 1992, “said Gartner analyst, Andrew Norwood.
The total global market for semi-conductors grew by 22% to US $ 419.7bil (RM1.67tril) in 2017, fuelled by growth in smartphones and other connected devices, Gartner calculated.
Samsung's sales jumped by 52.6% to US $ 61.2bil (RM244.60bil), giving it a market share of 14.6%, the study showed.
Intel's sales, on the other hand, grew by just 6.7% to US $ 57.7bil (RM230.61bil), or a market share of 13.8%.
Booming demand for memory chips was the main factor driving growth in the semi-conductors market, Gartner said.
“Memory accounted for more than two-thirds of all semiconductor growth in 2017, and became the largest semiconductor category,” said analyst Norwood.
The key driver behind the booming memory revenue was higher prices due to the supply shortage, the study said.
NAND flash prices increased year-on-year for the first time ever, up 17%, while DRAM prices rose 44%.
“The equipment companies could not absorb these prices from PCs to smartphones more expensive in 2017.”
Gartner suggested that the global ranking could be shaken up again this year if Singapore-based Broadcom succeeds in taking over US rival Qualcomm after its unsolicited merger.
If the tie-up does not go ahead, Samsung would fall back to third place in terms of revenues, Gartner calculated.
“2017 was a relatively quiet year for mergers and acquisitions.” Qualcomm's acquisition of NXP was a big deal to 2017, but did not. complicated by Broadcom's attempted takeover of Qualcomm, “Gartner said.
“If Broadcom can finalize this double acquisition”, then Samsung could slip to the third place during the next memory downturn in 2019, “said Norwood. – AFP