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ABI: By 2019, 67% of smartphones will be based on chipset vendors' reference designs

Posted: , by Alan F.

ABI: By 2019, 67% of smartphones will be based on chipset vendors' reference designs
Last year, chipset vendors like Qualcomm and MediaTek were able to get low-cost smartphone producers to use their reference designs on more than 33% of shipped smartphones. 69% of those handsets were priced at under $200 USD in countries like China and India. According to ABI Research, that percentage is going higher. The researcher sees 67% of smartphones shipped in 2019, to be based on the reference designs of silicon slingers.

To get to that level, some big name manufacturers will have to get on board, and that is exactly what ABI Research sees. Tier One producers, who in the past wanted differentiation to push their brands, are now looking at using reference designs to compete against the low-priced producers who have been already using this strategy. The researcher says firms like Nokia, Samsung, HTC, LG, ZTE and  Huawei have started doing this in emerging markets.

Malik Saadi, practice director at ABI Research, sees Tier One manufacturers forced to start using these reference designs from chipset vendors, on phones with higher price points. As this happens, the current crop of low-price manufacturers will be squeezed and some will be forced to close their doors. He says that higher priced handsets, priced at $400 or more, won't be affected because companies like Apple and Samsung use vertical integration and design their own chips.

"These trends will take the competition to another level, forcing OEMs to make more compromises on reference design ownership. As a result, reference designs owned by chipset suppliers will gradually entrench to higher price points, making the smartphone market increasingly commoditized."-Malik Saadi, practice director at ABI Research

Saadi says that by 2019, the number of smartphones produced using a reference design provided by chipset vendors, will total over 1.18 million units. 23% of them will wholesale for more than $200 USD. This will give the chipset producers more influence in the industry as they become responsible for most of the new innovations in the smartphone market.

source: DigiTimes

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posted on 05 May 2014, 03:52 4

1. xperiaDROID (banned) (Posts: 5629; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


No. No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.

The phone will definitely look crap if it's designed from the chipset vendors, we want the signature design from the manufacturers itself. If the manufacturers can't, they should start making their own chipsets like what Samsung, LG, Apple, Huawei did, or use chipsets from Nvidia, ST-Ericsson, Marvell etc.

posted on 05 May 2014, 04:45 1

3. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3224; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


Does ST-Ericsson make chipsets still?

posted on 05 May 2014, 04:59

4. xperiaDROID (banned) (Posts: 5629; Member since: 08 Mar 2013)


http://www.phonearena.com/news/HTC-is-fighting-back-Enlists-new-chipset-partners-in-a-bid-to-take-on-the-low-cost-segment_id49819

Maybe, cuz ST-Ericsson is one of HTC's chipset suppliers, and the HTC Desire 501 uses a dual core processor from ST-Ericsson. So, I think they're back to make chipsets but for the lower end phones.

posted on 05 May 2014, 05:35

5. ArtSim98 (Posts: 3224; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


Nice. Would be cool to see them doing some high end models again.

posted on 05 May 2014, 10:37

6. jroc74 (Posts: 5192; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)


I have to agree with this...

Anyone....take a look on Youtube for Texas Instruments dev, reference phones from around 2009, 2010.

It was a huge, dual screen BB clone monster. Nice for demoing Android and whatnot....terrible as an actual phone.

posted on 05 May 2014, 04:23

2. AJagtiani (Posts: 466; Member since: 24 Apr 2014)


This would be good for LG since their phones would look way better than they're current crop.

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