Who spends the most on semiconductors?
Unsurprisingly, we find several major OEM manufacturers of PCs and smartphones among the biggest semiconductor buyers.
In 2022, global inflation and recessionary pressures significantly weakened demand for PCs and smartphones, affecting global OEM production. During the year, the top 10 global OEMs decreased their chip spending by 7.6% and accounted for 37.2% of the total market, according to preliminary Gartner, Inc.
The top 10 semiconductor customers consist of mostly major PC and smartphone OEMs. “As a result, a sharp drop in consumer demand for PCs and smartphones prevented the top OEMs from increasing unit production and shipments,” said Masatsune Yamaji, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, in a press release.
The Analyst continues to state that China's zero-COVID policy also caused serious material shortages and short-term disruptions to the electronics supply chain.
“A lingering semiconductor shortage in the automotive, networking and industrial electronics markets, raised chip average selling prices (ASPs) and accelerated semiconductor revenue increases in these markets. Consequently, these factors resulted in the top OEMs decreasing their share of overall semiconductor spending in 2022 from that in 2021.”
The top ten companies from 2021 remained in 2022, with Apple and Samsung Electronics holding the top two positions. In 2022, Samsung Electronics and Sony were the only companies to increase their chip spending.
|2022 Rank||2021 Rank||Company||2022 Spending||2022 Market Share (%)||2021 Spending||2021-2022 Growth (%)|
|10||9||Hon Hai Precision||7,531||1.3||8,028||-6.2|
|Others (outside top 10)||377,680||62.8||352,568||7.1|
Apple reduced MPU spending by 11.7% as a result of its ongoing shift to in-house-designed application processors. Apple, on the other hand, increased its spending on non-memory chips by 2.8%.
Samsung Electronics increased chip spending by 2.2% and maintained its second place. The company increased its market share in the smartphone market due to its position in foldable phones, as well as benefiting from China's zero-COVID policy, which affected its competitors, resulting in an increase in semiconductor spending in 2022.
Because of continued global consumer interest in the PlayStation 5 console, Sony had the fastest growth in chip spending in 2022. However, due to ongoing serious chip shortages and disruptions in logistic networks throughout the year, production volumes could not be increased to meet the demand.
Memory was the worst-performing device category in 2022, accounting for approximately 25% of semiconductor sales, experiencing a 10% revenue decrease due to plummeting prices in the second half of 2022 amid tepid demand.