NZXT N7 B550Source: Windows Central

What you need to know

  • The world is in the midst of a semiconductor shortage.
  • Foundries producing chips have profited greatly from the shortage.
  • Foundries' revenue for Q2 2021 smashes all previous quarterly records.

In case you haven't recently attempted to buy one of the best graphics cards or best CPUs for your custom PC, here's the state of the market: It's messed up. Thanks to a global semiconductor shortage that's been ravaging supplies of most major PC components, demand for tech has never been higher — meaning the foundries responsible for the basis of said tech are making a killing.

That's the takeaway from a report provided by TrendForce, which highlights that foundry revenue hit a record high yet again, marking the eighth quarter in a row where that's happened. In short, since Q3 2019, every quarter's smashed the existing ceiling. This time around, revenue reached $24.407 billion, which is a 6.2% quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) increase compared to Q1 2021's figures.

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To break down that massive $24 billion figure, know that $13.3 billion of it was thanks to TSMC, which blew the competition out of the water. Samsung came in at a distant second with $4.334 billion, while SMIC came in fifth with $1.344 billion in its ongoing attempt to build up China for its chipmaking war with the U.S. Though fifth place isn't impressive by itself, consider that SMIC grew by 21.8% QoQ to achieve that revenue haul, granting it 5.3% of the total foundry market share.

Even though Q2 2021's overall figures were influenced by price hikes, record-smashing numbers are still record-smashing numbers. It remains to be seen whether TSMC, Samsung, and the rest of the pack can keep the momentum going into Q3 2021.