Global semiconductor market soars 10.4% in 2020

Amid the current chip shortage, Gartner has reported that the worldwide semiconductor revenue rose 10.4 percent to US$466.2 billion in 2020.

Intel retained its pole position by revenue in 2020, followed by Samsung Electronics, SK hynix and Micron. It grew 7.4 perecent, driven by growth of its core client and server CPU businesses.

The star performers in the top 10 were NVIDIA and MediaTek. NVIDIA’s 45.2 percent growth was primarily driven by its gaming-related and data centre businesses. MediaTek grew 38.1 percent because of the US sanctions against Huawei.

“Memory, GPUs and 5G chipsets led semiconductor growth, driven by hyperscale, PC, ultramobile, and 5G handset end-market demand, while automotive and industrial electronics suffered due to lower spending or a pause in spending owing to COVID-19,” said Andrew Norwood, Research Vice President of Gartner.

Memory, which accounted for 26.7 percent of semiconductor sales in 2020, was the second best-performing device category, experiencing a 13.5 percent revenue increase.

“Memory benefited from the key trend in 2020 — the shift to home working and learning — which fueled increased server build from hyperscale vendors to satisfy online working and entertainment, as well as a surge in PCs and ultramobiles,” said Norwood.

Within memory, NAND flash experienced the best performance with revenue growth of 25.2 percent due to a shortage in the first half of 2020.

“In 2021 both NAND flash and DRAM will be in shortage, sending pricing higher though the year and revenues rocketing by around 25 percent. This sets memory focused Samsung up with a good chance of recapturing the top spot in the semiconductor market from Intel in 2021” said Mr. Norwood.

Photo: Intel