Shipments of smartphone-use application processors in China are expected to decline 15.9% sequentially to 145 million units in the first quarter of 2017, according to Digitimes Research. Shipments on an annual basis will grow about 7.6% from the 134.8 million units shipped in first-quarter 2016.
MediaTek, among the top-three smartphone AP vendors, will suffer the largest sequential drop in first-quarter shipments, said Digitimes Research. The Taiwan-based firm's smartphone AP shipments in China will fall 18.6% sequentially to 57 million units in the first quarter of 2017, due to a lack of solutions to support LTE Cat. 7 technology as well as seasonal factors.
Spreadtrum is expected to see its smartphone shipments in China decline 15.6% on quarter to 27 million units in the first quarter of 2017, Digitimes Research indicated. Shipments of Spreadtrum's 16nm 4G SoC series, dubbed SC9860, targeted at the mid-range segment failed to make a positive contribution to the company's shipments during the quarter.
Qualcomm's smartphone AP shipments in China will register a smaller 12% sequential decrease in the first quarter, thanks to its more-competitive offerings, Digitimes Research noted. Qualcomm is forecast to ship 44 million units in the first quarter of 2017, up a substantial 41.9% on year. Qualcomm has enjoyed strong sales of its high-end S800-series solutions, while obtaining orders with its S600 series for mid-range devices from Xiaomi and Oppo.
In addition, Qualcomm will manage to grow its share of China's smartphone AP market above 30% in the first quarter of 2017, while MediaTek's market share will drop below 40%, Digitimes Research observed. MediaTek saw its share of the China smartphone AP market fall to 40.6% in the fourth quarter of 2016 from 46% in the first two quarters of the year.