Qualcomm leads smartphone processor market share with 49%, ahead of Apple, Samsung in Q1

Qualcomm is leading the smartphone applications processor market with 49 percent revenue share in the first quarter of 2013. It is head of Apple and Samsung.

Apple — the second largest vendor — has 13 percent share in the smartphone applications processor market, Strategy Analytics said.

Though Samsung is in third position with 12 percent share in Q1 2013, the difference between Samsung and Apple is narrow.

MediaTek and Broadcom are the other vendors in the smartphone applications processor market in Q1 2013.

Intel losing steam

Strategy Analytics’ report dated July 11 is silent about Intel’s market share. It had forecast that Intel’s Clover Trail+ dual-core x86 Atom chip could help in 2013. Intel, a new entrant to smartphone market, had 0.2 percent revenue share in the smartphone applications processor market in 2012.

Strategy Analytics says the smartphone applications processor market rose almost 50 percent to $3.6 billion in Q1 2013.

Qualcomm’s smartphone applications processor revenue share increased to 49 percent primarily due to surging stand-alone APQ-series applications processor shipments.

HTC One, Google Nexus 4, LG Optimus G, Samsung Galaxy S4 and Sony XPERIA Z supported the growth of Qualcomm.

Qualcomm ranked number one in the stand-alone applications processor category, overtaking Apple and Samsung in Q1 2013.

“The Snapdragon 600 (APQ8064T) has served Qualcomm well and the upcoming Snapdragon 800 family of chips will likely help further,” said Sravan Kundojjala, senior analyst, Strategy Analytics.

Strategy Analytics noted that low-cost Chinese chip supplier Spreadtrum made strong progress in Q1 2013 with the help of its EDGE and TD-SCDMA smartphone applications processors.

Spreadtrum is set to make significant share gains in 2013 as the chip company is winning deals from tier-one smartphone manufacturers.

Growth drivers

42 percent growth in smartphone shipments in Q1 was the driver for the 50 percent increase in smartphone applications processor market.

Smartphone vendors shipped 216.2 million units in Q1 2013, up 41.6 percent compared to the 152.7 million units shipped in Q2 2012, but 5.1 percent lower than the 227.8 million units shipped in Q4 2012.

The worldwide mobile phone market, according to IDC, rose 4 percent as vendors shipped 418.6 million mobile phones in Q1 compared to 402.4 million units in the first quarter of 2012 and 483.2 million units in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Qualcomm in tablet processor market

Qualcomm is gaining significant presence in the tablet applications processor market as well.

Qualcomm and Intel together captured less than 5 percent volume share in the tablet applications processor market in 2012, according to an earlier note by Strategy Analytics.

Intel and Qualcomm’s tablet success will depend on Microsoft Windows tablet operating system’s take off in coming months. Microsoft, which is facing pressure due to slow growth in PC market, will look at both tablet and mobile phone business aggressively.

The tablet applications processor market rose 83 percent in 2012 to reach $2.7 billion. Apple has 48 percent share in the tablet applications processor market in 2012. NVIDIA, Texas Instruments, Samsung and Qualcomm made up the rest of the top-five vendors.

Growth in tablet market has already impacted the PC penetration.

Baburajan K
editor@telecomlead.com