According to the Strategy Analytics Handset Component Technologies service report, “Baseband Market Share Tracker Q1 2013: Qualcomm's Revenue Share Reaches Record 59 Percent,” the global cellular baseband market reached $4.6 billion in Q1 2013, 18.5% year-on-year growth.
The report listed Qualcomm, Intel, Media Tek, ST-Ericsson, and Spreadtrum as the top five revenue-earning brands in the market. Qualcomm led the pack with 59% share, followed by Intel at 12% and Media Tek at 10%.
Qualcomm’s success has been attributed to their capitalization of Long Term Evolution (LTE) baseband technology in the early adoption phase, with Strategy Analytics estimating the company having 97% share of the LTE baseband market in Q1 2013. Strategy Analytics reports that because of this shift to fourth-generation (4G) cellular technology, 2G baseband specialists such as Media Tek and Spreadtrum will need to offer improved products to compete within the cellular market.
Strategy Analytics also reported that Qualcomm is not necessarily safe and will have to steadily compete to remain at the top. The extreme growth of the LTE market due to smartphones and non-handset mobile devices has increased the competition between the leaders, Qualcomm and Samsung and other companies in the market such as, Broadcom, Sequans, and several other smaller LTE baseband vendors.