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Qualcomm, Apple and MediaTek dominate mobile computing chip market

The Arm-based mobile computing chip market (smartphones, tablets and notebook PCs) grew 27 percent to $35.1 billion in 2021, according to Strategy Analytics’ Handset Component Technologies (HCT) service report.

Strategy Analytics’ research report “Apple Powers Arm-based Computing” estimates that Qualcomm, Apple and MediaTek captured the top-three revenue share ranking spots in the Arm-based mobile computing chip (AP) market in 2021.

  • Qualcomm led the Arm-based mobile computing chip market with a 34 percent revenue share, followed by Apple with 31 percent and MediaTek with 24 percent.
  • Smartphone, tablet, and notebook PC processors accounted for 88 percent, 9 percent and 3 percent of total Arm-based mobile computing chip revenue in 2021.
  • Arm-based mobile computing market outperformed the x86-based mobile computing market in revenues and units. Per our estimates, the total Arm-based mobile computing chip revenue was almost 20 percent higher than that of x86 (excluding chipsets and discrete GPUs) in 2021.

Sravan Kundojjala, author of the report and Director of Handset Component Technologies service at Strategy Analytics, commented, “Arm-based mobile computing posted robust revenue growth in 2021, driven largely by growth in smartphone applications processors. MediaTek led the overall Arm-based mobile computing market in units while Qualcomm led in revenues. In addition, MediaTek led the Arm-based smartphone, Android tablet and Chromebook processor segments in unit terms in 2021.”

Kundojjala continued, “Apple established itself as a distant market leader in Arm-based notebook PC processors with almost 90 percent revenue share. Apple’s M-series family of processors set the benchmark and gave Apple a 2–3-year lead over the rest of the Arm-based PC processor vendors. Qualcomm captured just 3 percent revenue share in the Arm-based notebook PC processor market in 2021 and lags Apple in CPU performance. Despite its low share, Qualcomm continues to invest in notebook PC processors with its Nuvia CPU cores. We believe that Arm-based notebook PC processor offers an attractive opportunity to Qualcomm, given the company’s growing collection of high-performance processor assets including CPU, GPU, AI, audio, imaging, connectivity, gaming and security.”

CT Bureau

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