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AMD loses out to Qualcomm, Samsung in MPU race

Posted: 22 May 2013 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:MPU? x86? RISC processor?

According to the latest report from IC Insights, the decline in notebook and desktop PC purchases, along with strong growth in smartphones and tablets, has dragged Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) down to fourth place in microprocessor sales in 2012 from second, where AMD had been perched behind Intel since the 1990s. The new top 10 MPU list shows most leading suppliers of mobile processors based on ARM technology moving higher in the ranking while PC-dependent x86 MPU companiesIntel and AMDcontinued to lose marketshare last year, added the market research firm.

Among the MPU leaders, only top-ranked Intel and fourth-place AMD sell central processors built with x86 microarchitectures for standard notebook and desktop PCs running Windows OS. The remaining top 10 suppliers develop and sell mobile MPUs with RISC processor cores licensed from ARM in the UK.

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Leading MPU suppliers ($M). Source: IC Insights.

Moving ahead of AMD in the 2012 microprocessor ranking were Qualcomm and Samsung, which in addition to its own ARM-based processors is the sole foundry source for Apple's custom-designed MPUs for its iPad tablets and iPhone handsets. Sales of Qualcomm's ARM-based Snapdragon SoC processors increased 28 per cent in 2012 to $5.3 billion, increasing its MPU marketshare to 9.4 per cent and moving it to second place in the ranking from third in 2011. Samsung (with Apple's MPU foundry business) moved to third place in the 2012 ranking from fourth in 2011 with a 78 per cent increase in MPU sales. About 83 per cent of Samsung's $4.7 billion in MPU revenues in 2012 came from Apple's processors.

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