The market for processors was worth $150 billion in 2021 split between FPGA, GPU, CPU and application processing units (APUs), according to Yole Developpement.

Processor (FPGA, CPU, GPU, APU) revenue by leading players from 2018 to 2022. Source: Yole Developpement.

The market is expected to increase by 8.7 percent in 2022, although Intel’s processor business is unlikely to keep pace. The rise of GPU and APU solutions addressing artificial intelligence applications in the data center and smartphones, respectively, has driven Intel’s processor market share down from 51 percent in 2018 to 39 percent in 2021.

Meanwhile the foundry market showed 27 percent annual growth in 2021, Yole states, and is set to achieve 20 percent plus growth in 2022.

Intel is undergoing two organizational shifts to try and address these changes in the market place. It is exiting the commoditized NAND flash memory business, by way of a sale to SK Hynix (see Intel sells NAND memory business to SK Hynix). It is also re-entering the foundry business. This has been underlined by its move to acquire Tower Semiconductor Ltd. (see Intel set to buy foundry Tower for $5.4 billion).

Top five foundry revenues from 2018 to 2021. Source: Yole Developpement.

However, for now that market is dominated by TSMC and Samsung. Of the revenue from the top five players in foundry in 2021, TSMC took 60 percent and Samsung 20 percent, Yole estimates.

The other three foundries – UMC, Globalfoundries and SMIC – are fighting for the remaining 20 percent with single-digit percentages each. This is the fight that Intel-plus-Tower will be forced to join.

Related links and articles:

News articles:

Intel sells NAND memory business to SK Hynix

Intel set to buy foundry Tower for $5.4 billion

Samsung to expand NAND flash production

China’s YMTC takes lead in 3D-NAND memory

SK Hynix buys MagnaChip foundry business, Fab 4

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