Qualcomm (QCOM) Sees Its China Market Share Plunge by 33% - Report

January 21, 2021 6:35 AM EST

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According to the latest report by CINNO Research, Qualcomm (NASDAQ: QCOM) saw its market share in China tumble to 25.4% in 2020 compared to 37.9% in 2019. This is after the semis giant recorded a plunge in shipments for China by 48.1% year-on-year.

The research shows that 307 million smartphone so-called system on chips (SOC) were shipped in China, representing a decrease of 20.8% year-on-year.

The U.S. ban on Huawei has impacted Qualcomm’s shipments and therefore opened up space for domestic alternatives. The ban prohibited Qualcomm from exporting some chips to Huawei. This way, the Taiwan-based company took advantage of problems facing Huawei and Qualcomm to increase its market share.

“As far as we know, (for) OPPO, Vivo and Xiaomi and Huawei, the MediaTek share has increased a lot,” CINNO Research told CNBC.

“This (is) not only because (of) the excellent performance of MediaTek’s mid-end platform, but also, it is undeniable that the U.S. has imposed a series of sanctions on Huawei & Hisilicon, forcing major manufacturers to seek more diversified, stable and reliable sources of supply.”

However, analysts note that QCOM can regain some of the lost share with its 5G chips. The company launched 5G smartphone chips.

“After the first year of 5G, let’s take a view of the changes in China’s smartphone SOC market. It shows that the market pattern has changed from a single dominant Qualcomm company in the 4G era, to a three-party pattern of Hisilicon, Qualcomm and MediaTek in 2020,” CINNO Research said.

These chips are known as “6 series” and “4 series” as the 5G supercycle is expected to mark the ongoing decade.

“Qualcomm launching 6 and 4 series 5G chipset will help to take share away from MediaTek in the fast growing 5G smartphone segment in China,” said Neil Shah, a partner at Counterpoint Research.

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