Semiconductors are a crucial element in modern electronics, making up an important component of many commonly used electronic devices including smartphones, tablets, and PCs - essentially all modern devices that many of us have become so highly dependent on in everyday life. As one might expect due to their central importance, the semiconductor industry is extensive and competitive. In 2021, global semiconductor sales reached 595 billion U.S. dollars, with the semiconductor industry predicted to grow once again in 2022 to 676 billion U.S. dollars. Memory semiconductors and 5G chips led semiconductor market growth in the year.
Semiconductor market opportunities
Smartphones represent an important market for the semiconductor industry, especially as these devices become more advanced and able to support technologies such as XR, 5G, and AI. Servers and data centers will become an even more important opportunity, with semiconductor innovation required to support cloud data centers and the rise in edge computing. Industrial and automotive applications are also expected to experience increased demand: as manufacturing facilities and vehicles become smarter and ever more connected, the requirement for more advanced semiconductor technology to fulfill these tasks grows.
Some of the biggest companies within the semiconductor industry include integrated device manufacturers (IDMs) like Intel, Samsung Electronics, SK Hynix, and Micron Technology. The South Korean company Samsung held the greatest share of the global semiconductor market, generating more than 73 billion U.S. dollars in semiconductor revenue in 2021. The company overtook the previous leader, Intel, benefitting from its dominance in the memory segment of the market. Other notable firms within the global semiconductor industry include fabless companies like Qualcomm and Nvidia, the likes of which work closely with foundries such as Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) - the world's largest foundry - who manufacture chips in their fabrication plants (fabs).
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In the following 6 chapters, you will quickly find the 35 most important statistics relating to "Semiconductors".