Apple, Samsung, and others boosted chip expenses big time in 2021

Qualcomm Snapdragon 865
Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 (Image credit: Qualcomm)

What you need to know

  • Chip buyers have been spending big time throughout 2021.
  • Apple, Samsung, and Lenovo make up the top three semiconductor purchasers, based on data shared by Gartner.
  • In total, the top ten buyers increased chip expenses by 25.2% in 2021.

In case you forgot, Apple, Samsung, Lenovo, Dell, HP, and all the other major industry players have a lot of money. And that's why they've been able to up their year-over-year (YoY) chip expenses in a big, big way.

As reported by Gartner, the top ten semiconductor buyers, by and large, greatly increased their chip spending in 2021, with the sole exception being Huawei. Huawei saw its semiconductor expenses drop by 32.3% between 2020 and 2021.

On the flip side, Apple was king of the hill with 26% growth in its annual chip expenses. Samsung skyrocketed even higher with 28.5% growth, and Lenovo managed 32.9%. But none grew more than Xiaomi with its meteoric 68.2% expense increase, gaining it 3% in the breakdown of total spender market share.

Don't expect big expenditures to end anytime soon. As has been the case for most of the duration of the global chip shortage, suppliers are making more money than ever and those interested in purchasing semiconductors are doling out money proportionately.

"The average selling prices (ASPs) of semiconductor chips, such as microcontroller units, general-purpose logic integrated circuits (ICs), and a wide variety of application-specific semiconductors, increased by 15% or more in 2021," according to Gartner. Panic buying has also been a factor contributing to spending since no company wants to be caught in a position like that of much of the automobile industry's businesses. They have been more severely hampered by the shortages than consumer tech corporations because many of them didn't maintain their chip vendor relationships to the same degree during the pandemic.

Robert Carnevale

Robert Carnevale is the News Editor for Windows Central. He's a big fan of Kinect (it lives on in his heart), Sonic the Hedgehog, and the legendary intersection of those two titans, Sonic Free Riders. He is the author of Cold War 2395. Have a useful tip? Send it to