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What just happened? Samsung has replaced Intel as the world’s largest semiconductor manufacturer, thanks to a 19% increase in quarterly sales on the back of strong demand and rising prices in the DRAM and flash memory markets.
Like its long-running rivalry with Apple in the phone world—before Xiaomi dominate—Samsung is constantly fighting with Intel for the number one position in the semiconductor manufacturing industry.
According to analyst firm IC Insights’ August update to the 2021 McClean Report, Samsung moved from second place in Q1 2021 to number one in Q2. The company made $19.26 billion in integrated circuit (IC) sales and $1.03 billion from optoelectronic, sensor, and discrete (OSD) sales, the Korea Herald reports, making a total of $20.29 billion in overall sales.
Intel posted $19.3 billion in second-quarter sales, a QoQ increase of just 3%. The change marks the first time Intel has been knocked off the top position since the third quarter of 2018.
IC Insights believes Samsung will stay on top throughout the current quarter as memory demand increases, beating Intel’s sales total by around $3.5 billion.
Further down the list, TSMC sits in third place, followed by SK Hynix in fourth and Micron in fifth. The latter two companies experienced 21% and 16% QoQ sales increases, respectively. Elsewhere, Nvidia saw its sales rise 14%, and MediaTek was up 17%. They were two of the four fabless companies in the top ten alongside Qualcomm and Broadcom.
Overall sales for the top ten reached $95.5 billion in the second quarter, up 10% QoQ. IC Insights predicts that the semiconductor market will increase by 23% in 2021.
In related news, we recently heard that Samsung is raising chip fabrication prices to finance new foundries.