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Mobile Semiconductor Market Share Forecast 2014-2019

Published October 2015

Authors: Linley Gwennap and Mike Demler

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Forecasting Winners and Losers

“Mobile Semiconductor Market Share Forecast 2014-2019” provides a first look at 2015 market share and a forecast for market share through 2019. This report is unique in breaking down market share by vendor throughout the forecast period. Our model uses ongoing shifts in OEM share, technology (e.g., transition to integrated Wi-Fi), and product categories (e.g., tablet computers) to forecast which chip suppliers will benefit and which will lose out.

This report forecasts market size and vendor share for six categories of semiconductors for mobile applications: cellular baseband processors, application processors, mobile Wi-Fi chips, Bluetooth transceivers, GPS receivers, and NFC chips. Data includes both revenue and unit estimates for the leading vendors of each of these products. For each category, the report includes final 2014 market share, projected 2015 share, and forecasts of the leading vendors’ share in 2016 through 2019.

This unique report also provides an overall forecast of total units and revenue for each product category, with appropriate breakouts. For example, baseband processors are forecast by air interface, application processors by integration level, and connectivity chips by combo category. Our methodology combines bottoms-up interviews with chip suppliers with tops-down analysis of OEM shipments and their suppliers.

The report provides the detailed market information needed to sort out the dynamics of this market. With this report, chip vendors, OEMs, and investors will readily see which companies are the leading suppliers in a given product market, how these companies’ positions are changing, how big the mature product markets are, and how fast the emerging categories are growing.

Companies covered in the report include Allwinner, Apple, Freescale, Intel, Marvell, MediaTek, Nvidia, NXP, Qualcomm, RDA Microelectronics, Rockchip, Samsung, and Spreadtrum. This new edition forecasts the effects of Qualcomm’s drop in revenue, Samsung’s deployment of its own cellular chips, Huawei’s deployment of its own connectivity chips, and the accelerating transition to LTE.

The report includes a brief text summary providing analysis of the data and a set of market share tables and figures for each category. Companies purchasing a corporate license also receive the tables in Microsoft Excel form.

Market Research From The Industry Experts

As the leading vendor of analysis for communications semiconductors, The Linley Group has the expertise to develop a high-quality set of market estimates. Our entire analyst team applies its extensive experience and network of industry contacts to deliver the quantitative information you need to make informed business decisions.

Whether you are looking for a well-established vendor to source from, a vendor to partner with, or a rising company to invest in, this report will cut your research time and save you money. Order "Mobile Semiconductor Market Share Forecast 2014-2019" today.

This report is written for:

  • Product managers and executives seeking to assess the performance of their product lines over the past year or to identify areas in which to invest or divest.
  • Strategic sourcing professionals and engineers at OEMs seeking information about semiconductor suppliers.
  • Investors and financial analysts seeking data to support investment decisions.
  • Public-relations professionals seeking to quantify their client’s success.

This report tracks mobile semiconductors that totaled $39.1 billion in 2014 revenue. This total includes cellular baseband processors and their associated RF and power-management chips, application processors (AP), mobile Wi-Fi chips, mobile Bluetooth chips, GPS chips, NFC chips, and combo connectivity chips. Baseband processors, including those with an integrated AP, comprise the largest segment of this market, generating $24.7 billion in 2013.

Changes in the shipments of wireless handsets, smartphones, tablet computers, and other mobile devices have a large effect on the sales of these mobile chips. For example, in 2015, Samsung is losing share in smartphones while the former Nokia (now Microsoft) is losing share in basic phones. In both cases, Chinese vendors such as Huawei, Xiaomi, and ZTE are picking up the slack. These changes, along with supplier changes at several leading vendors, help some chip suppliers and hurt others.

The market is also being roiled by vendor transitions. After Broadcom withdrew from the cellular-baseband market in 2014, Nvidia later did the same. Marvell recently announced plans to exit the smartphone and tablet markets. Intel shipped its first integrated AP+BB processors in 2015, as did Samsung. Huawei deployed a complete set of in-house chips, including AP+BB and Wi-Fi combo. These changes put new opportunities into play and remove others from the table.

Qualcomm’s shipments plunged in 1H15 as a result of two problems. First, the company lost all share of the Galaxy S6 after holding nearly all of the Galaxy S5; we estimate this single loss cost more than $2 billion in revenue. Qualcomm also started a price war against MediaTek for low-cost LTE chips, eventually losing both market share and average price (ASP). We project the company’s unit shipments for 2015 to drop 9% from the previous year, and its revenue to fall 22%. Shipments should recover slightly in 2016, but Qualcomm continues to face headwinds.

MediaTek continues to grow rapidly in smartphone processors and could surpass Qualcomm in 2015 application-processor shipments. The company ranks second in LTE baseband shipments despite shipping its first LTE smartphone processor in 4Q14. After the price war with Qualcomm, however, MediaTek did not get any ASP benefit from its shift to LTE; in fact, we estimate its ASP will decline from $7.23 in 2014 to $6.25 in 2015. Given that most remaining smartphone growth will be at the low end, we forecast continued strong growth for MediaTek through 2019.

Despite the long-standing shift to AP+BB chips, the standalone AP market will grow slightly in 2015, particularly when measured in revenue. This growth is mainly due to Samsung’s shift from an AP+BB processor (Snapdragon 810) in the Galaxy S5 to a two-chip solution (in-Exynos 7 AP and in-house BB) for the Galaxy S6. The cost of the 14nm Exynos 7 is quite high, further increasing the revenue for standalone AP chips. We expect the Galaxy S7 to use AP+BB chips, allowing the standalone market to resume its downward trend.

Like the AP, Wi-Fi is now being absorbed into the baseband processor. We forecast that baseband-integrated Wi-Fi will surpass Wi-Fi combos in 2016 and rise from 9% of all Wi-Fi chips in 2013 to 61% in 2019. This transition is moving quickly in low-cost and midrange smartphones, which often use reference designs from MediaTek, Qualcomm, or Spreadtrum. As a result of this shift, shipments of traditional Wi-Fi combo chips will decline during the forecast period.

This shift is bad news for Broadcom, which we expect to ship just 36% of all mobile Wi-Fi chips in 2015. Excluding baseband-integrated Wi-Fi, Broadcom’s share is about 67%. The company also lost share when its baseband customers, which often used its Wi-Fi chips, switched to integrated solutions from other baseband suppliers. We expect Broadcom’s total connectivity revenue to decline at a –8.8% CAGR from 2014 to 2019.

Smartphones and tablets now consume 89% of all mobile connectivity chips, causing connectivity vendors to focus on combo chips that supply as many of the main functions (Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, and FM) as possible. Three-way combos (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and FM) are the most common option today, with a shift to four-way combos coming in 2016. As standalone connectivity chips disappear, the market share for Bluetooth and GPS chips is becoming quite similar to that of Wi-Fi chips.

NFC deployment is rising quickly; we expect half of all smartphones in 2015 will include this feature, rising to 89% in 2019. This growth will drive shipments of mobile NFC chips to 2.1 billion units in that year, according to our forecast. Most of these chips, however, will be either combo chips or cellular basebands that integrate the NFC function. The current leader in NFC chip shipments, NXP, will not benefit from this trend because it lacks the technologies required to create integrated solutions. We expect MediaTek to become the market leader in 2016, with familiar faces such as Qualcomm and Broadcom also gaining.

List of Figures
List of Tables
About the Authors
About the Publisher
Executive Summary
1 Introduction
Product Categorization
Report Organization
Forecast Methodology
General Guidelines
2 Mobile Devices
Mobile-Device Shipments
All Device Types
Smartphone Shipments
Handset Shipments
Connectivity Usage
3 Cellular Baseband Processors
Industry Forecast
Forecast by Application
Forecast by Integration Type
Forecast by Cellular Protocol
Revenue and ASP Forecast
Market Share
Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
Market-Share Forecast
Shipments by Vendor
LTE Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
4 Application Processors
Industry Forecast
Forecast by Application
Forecast by Integration Type
Forecast by Core Count
Forecast by Instruction Set (32/64-Bit)
Revenue and ASP Forecast
Market Share
Shipments by Vendor
Standalone Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
Market-Share Forecast
Shipments by Vendor
Standalone-AP Shipments by Vendor
Standalone-AP Revenue by Vendor
5 Mobile Wi-Fi Chips
Industry Forecast
Forecast by Application
Forecast by Integration Type
Forecast by Combo Function
Revenue and ASP Forecast
Market Share
Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
Market-Share Forecast
All Shipments by Vendor
Combo Shipments by Vendor
Combo Revenue by Vendor
Standalone Shipments by Vendor
6 Mobile Bluetooth Chips
Industry Forecast
Forecast by Application
Forecast by Integration Type
Revenue and ASP Forecast
Market Share
Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
Market-Share Forecast
All Shipments by Vendor
Combo Shipments by Vendor
Combo Revenue by Vendor
7 Mobile GPS Chips
Industry Forecast
Forecast by Application
Forecast by Integration Type
Revenue and ASP Forecast
Market Share
Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
Market-Share Forecast
All Shipments by Vendor
Standalone Shipments by Vendor
Standalone Revenue by Vendor
8 Mobile NFC Chips
Industry Forecast
Forecast by Integration Type
Market Share
Shipments by Vendor
Revenue by Vendor
Market-Share Forecast
All Shipments by Vendor
Standalone Shipments by Vendor
Standalone Revenue by Vendor
9 Conclusions
Connectivity Forecast
Combo Connectivity Chips by Type
Connectivity Revenue by Type
Connectivity Revenue by Vendor
Mobile-Semiconductor Forecast
Total Mobile Revenue
Mobile Revenue by Vendor
Figure 1-1. Taxonomy of mobile semiconductors.
Figure 2-1. Industry shipments of mobile devices by type, 2012-2019.
Figure 2-2. Unit market share of smartphones by vendor, 2013-2019.
Figure 2-3. Unit market share of cellular handsets by vendor, 2013-2019.
Figure 2-4. Handset attach rates for connectivity functions, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-1. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-2. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by integration, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-3. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by air interface, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-4. Industry revenue of cellular-baseband processors by air interface, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-5. Unit market share of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 3-6. Revenue market share of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 3-7. Unit market share of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-8. Unit market share of LTE processors by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 3-9. Revenue market share of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 4-1. Industry shipments of application processors by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-2. Industry shipments of application processors by integration type, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-3. Industry shipments of application processors by core count, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-4. Industry shipments of application processors by instruction set, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-5. Industry revenue of standalone AP chips by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-6. Industry revenue of merchant standalone AP chips by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-7. Unit market share of merchant application processors by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 4-8. Unit market share of standalone APs by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 4-9. Revenue market share of standalone APs by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 4-10. Unit market share of application processors by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 4-11. Unit market share of standalone APs by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 4-12. Revenue market share of standalone APs by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 5-1. Industry shipments of mobile Wi-Fi chips by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-2. Industry shipments of Wi-Fi chips by integration type, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-3. Industry shipments of Wi-Fi combo chips by function, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-4. Industry ASP and revenue of Wi-Fi chips by integration type, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-5. Unit market share of Wi-Fi standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014–2015.
Figure 5-6. Revenue share of Wi-Fi standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 5-7. Unit market share of all Wi-Fi chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-8. Unit market share of Wi-Fi standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-9. Revenue share of Wi-Fi standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 5-10. Unit shipments of standalone Wi-Fi chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 6-1. Industry shipments of mobile Bluetooth chips by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 6-2. Industry shipments of Bluetooth chips by integration type, 2012-2019.
Figure 6-3. Industry revenue of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips, 2012-2019.
Figure 6-4. Unit share of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014–2015.
Figure 6-5. Revenue share of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 6-6. Unit market share of all Bluetooth chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 6-7. Unit share of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 6-8. Revenue share of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 7-1. Industry shipments of GPS chips by application, 2012-2019.
Figure 7-2. Industry shipments of GPS chips by integration type, 2012-2019.
Figure 7-3. Industry ASP and revenue of standalone GPS chips, 2012–2019.
Figure 7-4. Unit market share of all GPS chips by vendor, 2014–2015.
Figure 7-5. Revenue market share of standalone GPS chips by vendor, 2014–2015.
Figure 7-6. Unit market share of all GPS chips by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 7-7. Unit market share of standalone GPS chips by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 7-8. Revenue market share of standalone GPS chips by vendor, 2012–2019.
Figure 8-1. Industry shipments of NFC chips by integration type, 2012-2019.
Figure 8-2. Unit market share of all NFC chips by vendor, 2014–2015.
Figure 8-3. Revenue market share of standalone NFC chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Figure 8-4. Unit market share of all NFC chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 8-5. Unit market share of standalone NFC chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 8-6. Revenue market share of standalone NFC chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 9-1. Industry shipments of connectivity chips by type, 2012-2019.
Figure 9-2. Industry revenue of connectivity chips by type, 2012-2019.
Figure 9-3. Revenue market share of connectivity chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Figure 9-4. Revenue market share of mobile chips by vendor, 2012-2019.
Table 2-1. Industry shipments of mobile devices by type, 2014-2019.
Table 2-2. Industry shipments of smartphones by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 2-3. Industry shipments of cellular handsets by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 2-4. Handset attach rates for connectivity functions, 2014-2019.
Table 3-1. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by application, 2014-2019.
Table 3-2. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by integration, 2014-2019.
Table 3-3. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by air interface, 2014-2019.
Table 3-4. Industry ASP and revenue of cellular-baseband processors, 2014-2019.
Table 3-5. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 3-6. Industry revenue of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 3-7. Industry shipments of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 3-8. Industry shipments of LTE processors by vendor, 2014–2019.
Table 3-9. Industry revenue of cellular-baseband processors by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 4-1. Industry shipments of application processors by application, 2014-2019.
Table 4-2. Industry shipments of application processors by integration type, 2014-2019.
Table 4-3. Industry shipments of application processors by core count, 2014-2019.
Table 4-4. Industry shipments of application processors by instruction set, 2014-2019.
Table 4-5. Industry ASP and revenue of standalone AP chips by application, 2014-2019.
Table 4-6. Industry ASP and revenue of merchant standalone AP by application, 2014-2019.
Table 4-7. Industry shipments of application processors by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 4-8. Industry shipments of standalone APs by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 4-9. Industry revenue of standalone APs by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 4-10. Industry shipments of application processors by vendor, 2014–2019.
Table 4-11. Industry shipments of standalone APs by vendor, 2014–2019.
Table 4-12. Industry revenue of standalone APs by vendor, 2014–2019.
Table 5-1. Industry shipments of mobile Wi-Fi chips by application, 2014-2019.
Table 5-2. Industry shipments of Wi-Fi chips by integration type, 2014-2019.
Table 5-3. Industry shipments of Wi-Fi combo chips by function, 2014-2019.
Table 5-4. Industry ASP and revenue of Wi-Fi chips by integration type, 2014-2019.
Table 5-5. Industry shipments of standalone and combo Wi-Fi chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 5-6. Industry revenue of standalone and combo Wi-Fi chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 5-7. Industry shipments of all Wi-Fi chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 5-8. Industry shipments of Wi-Fi standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 5-9. Industry revenue of Wi-Fi standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 5-10. Industry shipments of standalone Wi-Fi chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 6-1. Industry shipments of mobile Bluetooth chips by application, 2014-2019.
Table 6-2. Industry shipments of Bluetooth chips by integration type, 2014-2019.
Table 6-3. Industry ASP and revenue of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips, 2014-2019.
Table 6-4. Industry shipments of Bluetooth standalone and combo by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 6-5. Industry revenue of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 6-6. Industry shipments of all Bluetooth chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 6-7. Industry shipments of Bluetooth standalone and combo by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 6-8. Industry revenue of Bluetooth standalone and combo chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 7-1. Industry shipments of GPS chips by application, 2014-2019.
Table 7-2. Industry shipments of GPS chips by integration type, 2014-2019.
Table 7-3. Industry ASP and revenue of standalone GPS chips, 2014-2019.
Table 7-4. Industry shipments of all GPS chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 7-5. Industry revenue of standalone GPS chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 7-6. Shipments of all GPS chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 7-7. Shipments of standalone GPS chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 7-8. Industry revenue of standalone GPS chips by vendor, 2014–2019.
Table 8-1. Industry shipments of NFC chips by integration type, 2014-2019.
Table 8-2. Industry shipments of all NFC chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 8-3. Industry revenue of standalone NFC chips by vendor, 2014-2015.
Table 8-4. Shipments of all NFC chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 8-5. Shipments of standalone NFC chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 8-6. Industry revenue of standalone NFC chips by vendor, 2014–2019.
Table 9-1. Industry shipments of connectivity chips, 2014-2019.
Table 9-2. Industry revenue of connectivity chips, 2014-2019.
Table 9-3. Industry revenue of connectivity chips by vendor, 2014-2019.
Table 9-4. Industry revenue of mobile chips by vendor, 2014-2019.

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