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© head off dreamstime.com Analysis | February 12, 2021

Apple and Samsung remain the top chip buyers in 2020

Gartner says that the top 10 original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) increased their semiconductor spending by 10% in 2020, and accounted for 42% of the total market, up from 40.9% in 2019.

“Two major factors impacted the top OEMs’ semiconductor spending in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and the political conflict between the U.S. and China,” says Masatsune Yamaji, research director at Gartner, in a press release. “The pandemic weakened the demand for 5G smartphones and disrupted vehicle production, but drove the demand for mobile PCs and video games, as well as the investment in cloud data centers through 2020. Furthermore, a rise in memory prices in 2020 resulted in increased OEM chip spending through the year.” Huawei significantly decreased its semiconductor spending in 2020, down 23.5% from 2019. “The U.S. government increased trade restrictions on Huawei in 2020, limiting its ability to purchase semiconductors, which, in turn, limited its smartphone supply and reduced its market share. However, the Chinese market remains important for semiconductor vendors, as other Chinese smartphone OEMs stepped in to fill the vacuum created by Huawei in the second half of 2020,” says Mr. Yamaji. Preliminary ranking of top 10 companies by semiconductor design total available market, Worldwide, (millions of dollars)
2020 Rank2019 RankCompany2020 Revenue2020 Market Share (%)2019 RevenueGrowth (%)
11Apple53,61611.943,23924.0
22Samsung Electronics36,4168.130,24720.4
33Huawei19,0864.224,933-23.5
44Lenovo18,5554.116,77310.6
55Dell Technologies16,5813.715,5846.4
66BBK Electronics13,3933.011,65314.9
77HP Inc.10,9922.410,7292.4
88Xiaomi8,7902.06,97426.0
99Hon Hai Precision Industry5,7301.35,816-1.5
1010Hewlett Packard Enterprise5,5701.25,5610.2
Others261,10958.0247,6405.4
Total449,838100.0419,1487.3
Apple retained its position as the No. 1 global semiconductor customer in 2020, mainly due to the continued success of AirPods, special demand for Mac computers and iPads, and increasing NAND flash consumption. “Increasing demand for mobile PCs and tablets due to working from home significantly drove the production of Macs and iPads through 2020,” says Mr. Yamaji. “The company also began its transition to Apple silicon for its Mac product line in the second half of 2020.” Samsung Electronics remained in second position and increased its spending by 20.4% in 2020, due to weakened competition from Huawei and the strong demand for enterprise solid-state drives (SSDs) for data centers. The company benefited from trends such as working from home and e-learning that drove demand for PCs and cloud servers in which many SSDs from Samsung are used. Among the top 10 companies, Xiaomi increased its spending the most – by 26% – in 2020. “Xiaomi’s smartphone business was minimally impacted due to its primarily online-channel-driven sales model throughout the pandemic. Sanctions on Huawei enabled Xiaomi to gain more market share in the smartphone market. Xiaomi’s strong success in a wide variety of consumer IoT devices, including smart TVs, wearables and smart home appliances, also increased its semiconductor spending in 2020,” Mr. Yamaji concludes.
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February 12 2021 10:46 am V18.15.24-2