Processor sales: Intel remains a very solid number one

Written by Guillaume
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AMD remains number two and Apple closes the podium.

Perhaps because of memories of an ultra-dominant Intel - practically in a monopoly position - during the 90s and 2000s, we tend to overplay the American company's fall from grace. Admittedly, it is no longer as hegemonic as it once was, but Intel still has plenty in reserve, and its position in the processor sector remains largely enviable, as the report published by Canalys and relayed by Wccftech attests. The report does not deal with other semiconductors - where Intel may be in more difficulty - and focuses on the state of the market in the fourth quarter of 2023.


Intel's position in the processor sector is clearly dominant. While sales in the processor sector rose by 3% year-on-year, Intel benefited the most from this increase... of the three main players, that is. Over the same period, Intel sold a whopping 50 million processors, while AMD had to make do with 8 million and Apple 6 million. These absolute figures are a poor reflection of the trend, and it's worth looking at the growth figures for a better understanding. Indeed, while Intel is growing as much as the processor sector as a whole (+3% year-on-year), AMD is in slight decline (-1%) and Apple is falling more sharply (-4%). Outside the top 3, MediaTek breaks through with +27% year-on-year, but its share remains marginal.

Having said that, we're only talking about the number of sales. To complete the picture, we should also look at sales by value. Here, things are markedly different, and illustrate the difficulties encountered by Intel in certain segments. Indeed, while Intel remains number one in the sector, its sales totalled $41 billion in the fourth quarter of 2023, up 2% year-on-year - less than the increase in the number of sales. On the contrary, despite their decline in numbers, AMD and Apple are increasing in value: AMD is at $8 billion (+8%) and Apple at $5 billion (+6%). From this brief report, we can conclude that Intel's position is not really in danger in the short term. On the other hand, it should also be noted that Intel seems to be losing ground at the top end of the market, its most lucrative segment.