The figures also showed that Samsung replaced Intel as the leading semiconductor vendor, thanks to a 52.6% boost in its revenues. “The largest memory supplier, Samsung Electronics, gained the most market share and took the number one position from Intel – the first time Intel has been toppled since 1992,” according to Andrew Norwood, research vice president at Gartner.
Within the memory sector, NAND prices increased by 17% – the first time that NAND has shown year on year growth – while DRAM prices rose by 44%.
Other major memory vendors, including SK Hynix and Micron Technology, also performed strongly in 2017, with SK’s revenues up by 79% and Micron’s sales growing by 78%.
While Intel dropped to number two in the industry, it still saw its revenue grow by 6.7%, although PC processor sales were said to have grown by 1.9%.
“Samsung’s lead is literally built on sand – in the form of memory silicon,” said Norwood. “Memory pricing will weaken in 2018, initially for NAND and then DRAM in 2019 as China increases its memory production capacity. We then expect Samsung to lose a lot of the revenue gains it has made.”
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