UNISOC Ranks Among Top Four in Global Chip Market

Market research organization Counterpoint released statistics last month revealing that Chinese chip maker UNISOC (Shanghai) Technologies Co., Ltd. occupied a market share of 8.4% in global smartphone application processors during the second quarter of 2021, ranking third in the open market (excluding Apple).

It is an accomplishment worth celebrating, as UNISOC has doubled its market share in just one year after its 2020 market share was calculated separately for the first time. In 2018 and 2019, the firm’s data were not separately shown, as its market share was classified under “Others.”

Chinese media outlet Economic Observer reported that UNISOC’s CEO once said the state-owned enterprise was “on the verge of bankruptcy,” and now is working hard in the main chip field of 5G smartphone at all costs. For many years before, UNISOC made profits with cheap smartphones costing around 1000 yuan ($155) or less. Since Huawei HiSilicon has suffered a setback, now only Samsung, Apple, Qualcomm and MediaTek stood in front of UNISOC.

On September 16, UNISOC showed the running score of Tanggula 6nm 5G chip higher than 400,000 points at the online conference it held. This chip is also the world’s first outcome product that tests the 5G R16 Ready technology. UNISOC also shared the case of its 5G technology empowering smart medical care, aircraft manufacturing, logistics, mining and other industry scenarios.

One UNISOC executive said at the conference that its Zhanrui 6nm chip is now under mass production and debugging, and its performance could match with the mainstream high-end smartphones. Related products will be released in the market soon.

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At present, UNISOC is in the financing stage of Pre-IPO. An investor focusing on the primary market of semiconductors told reporters that there are about three rounds of financing in the process, and the first round took a long time. UNISOC’s 5G projects normally cost hundreds of millions of dollars, making many investors feel it is “too risky.”