Worldwide semiconductor revenue grew 13.4% in 2018

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Worldwide semiconductor revenue totaled $476.7 billion in 2018, a 13.4 percent increase from 2017, according to preliminary results by Gartner. Memory strengthened its position as the largest semiconductor category, accounting for 34.8 percent of total semiconductor revenue, up from 31 percent in 2017. The combined revenue of the top 25 semiconductor vendors increased by 16.3 percent during 2018 and accounted for 79.3 percent of the market, outperforming the rest of the market, which saw a milder 3.6 percent revenue increase. This is due to the concentration of the memory vendors in the top-25 ranking. In terms of semiconductor devices, memory was simultaneously the largest (35 percent) and highest-performing device category for 2018 with 27.2 percent revenue growth. This was driven by increases in ASP for DRAM for much of the year with the exception of the fourth quarter of 2018. Within the memory segment, NAND flash suffered a marked slowdown with ASP declines through much of the year due to oversupply. This device category still managed to show a 6.5 percent revenue increase, driven by higher adoption of solid-state drives (SSDs) and increasing content in smartphones. The second-largest semiconductor category, application-specific-standard products (ASSPs), saw limited growth of 5.1 percent due to a stalling smartphone market combined with a tablet market that continues to decline. Leading vendors in this segment area, including Qualcomm and MediaTek, are aggressively expanding into adjacent markets with stronger prospects for growth, including automotive and IoT applications.

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