The Taiwanese company gained a stake in the low- and mid-range 5G SoCs, although 4G LTE SoCs helped cement its leadership.

Counterpoint research firm data showed that MediaTek remained the undisputed market leader in the smartphone segment (SoC) segment in the third quarter with a 40% share.

MediaTek’s market share increased from 33% in the same period last year on the back of high demand for 4G chips and competitive 5G chipsets. The Taiwanese company gained a stake in the low- and mid-range 5G SoCs, although 4G LTE SoCs helped cement its leadership.

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MediaTek’s continued growth has made Qualcomm’s mission to ensure that it returns to its leadership position challenging. However, the San Diego-based chip maker is leading the 5G smartphone modem market. Qualcomm is also reaping the benefits of going with dual sourcing from foundries, representing quarterly and yearly growth in smartphone SoC shipments.

Counterpoint data showed that Qualcomm’s market share in the third quarter fell one basis point to 27%. However, the company saw a growth of 9 percentage points from the previous quarter due to double sourcing. Counterpoint said Qualcomm’s SoC shipments grew on a quarterly basis.

“Qualcomm led the 5G baseband market with a 62 percent share,” said Counterpoint Research Analyst Parv Sharma.

“It gained from the core 5G modem chipset that won the Apple iPhone 13 series and the demand for the full 5G SoC chips, from the flagship 8 series to the more affordable series 4.”

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Counterpoint expects Qualcomm to increase market share in the fourth quarter on the back of its Snapdragon 7, 6 and 4 series portfolio.

Apple retained third place in the third quarter with a share of 15%. The Cupertino-based tech company increased its market share by 3 basis points and Counterpoints expects to post further gains in the fourth quarter. However, the lack of components may affect Apple’s festival season sales.

China’s Unisoc continued its growth momentum as its market share entered the double digits at 10%. The company’s customer base has expanded with Honor, Realme, ZTE, Motorola and Transsion joining their ranks. It also started selling SoCs for the Samsung Galaxy A series.

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However, Samsung slipped to fifth place from fourth place with a 5% share of Samsung Exynos chips.

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