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Mobile processor market competition will heighten, In-Stat says

Aug 18, 2009 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

Analyst firm In-Stat expects the mobile processor market to see heightened competition in the second half of 2009, as x86 chip makers continue to drive down power consumption and ARM vendors grow the performance of their processors by adding more cores. In-Stat also expects to see the mobile processor market grow 22.3 percent by 2013, reports eWEEK's Jeffrey Burt.

The findings are in a report, "Mobile Processor Review: The Battle for the Next Generation Consumer Devices," which In-Stat announced today. A key area of competition will be the fast-growing mini-notebook market, Burt quotes In-Stat analyst Jim McGregor as saying.

"While both [x86 and ARM processor vendors] will offer competitive solutions, In-Stat does not anticipate quick changes in the current market mix," McGregor said in a statement. "Mini-notebooks will be the primary battleground as the market starts seeing some crossover in 2011. However, both architectures are likely to co-exist as devices become more focused in features and usage models."

Intel and AMD continue to reduce the power envelope of their x86 processors, Burt notes. Intel continues to make an aggressive push into the mobile space with its Atom processor, which initially was aimed at embedded devices and the netbook space, but is now making inroads elsewhere. Meanwhile, vendors like Freescale, Texas Instruments and Samsung are looking to increase the performance of their chips by adding more cores, which enables them to grow performance while keeping power consumption down, the eWEEK story adds.

In a release summarizing its new report, In-Stat predicted the following:

  • The total available market (TAM) for merchant market mobile processors is projected to grow 22.3 percent through 2013.
  • Integration of additional cores, graphics/multimedia, I/O, and baseband functionality will continue, particularly in handheld applications. Among smartphones, for example, 87 percent will feature mobile processors with integrated baseband functionality by 2013.
  • The estimated value of the processing, graphics/multimedia, and baseband functions will all increase at double digit growth rates over the next few years.

Other analyst firms agree that the market for mobile processors looks strong, Burt adds in his eWEEK story. For example, Gartner reported Aug. 12 that while worldwide mobile phone shipments fell 6.1 percent in the second quarter over the same period last year, shipments of smartphones grew 27 percent.

In addition, according to Burt, IDC said July 30 that the consumer notebook market in the second quarter reached a new record, with 6.3 million units shipped. IDC analysts say the rise of the mini-notebook was a key factor in driving sales in the consumer notebook market, he adds.

Further information

According to In-Stat, its report, ""Mobile Processor Review: The Battle for the Next Generation Consumer Devices," has 37 pages, costs $3,495, and includes the following:

  • Forecasts of TAM mobile processors by application, and market value TAM of silicon functions in mobile devices, through 2013
  • Processor and vendor profiles of Anyka, AMD, Broadcom, Chipnuts, Freescale, Intel, Jade Chip, Marvell, MtekVision, NVIDIA, Pollux, Qualcomm, Renesas, Samsung, Texas Instruments, Via Technologies, and Vimicro
  • Examination of the competing architectures and integration trends for multiple cores, graphics, I/O, and baseband functionality

More information on the report may be found on the In-Stat website, here, or in Jeffrey Burt's story for eWEEK, here.

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