According to the latest research by Counterpoint on ‘Global Cellular IoT Module and Chipset Tracker by Application’, global cellular internet of things (IoT) chipset shipments grew 57 per cent YoY in Q4 2021. China continued to dominate the cellular IoT chipset market by accounting for nearly 60 per cent of the shipments. 5G grew 392 per cent YoY followed by 4G Cat 1 with 154 per cent year-on-year (Y-o-Y) growth. Meanwhile, router/CPE, PC and industrial were the top three applications for 5G.

Commenting on the market dynamics, Anish Khajuria, Research Analyst, said, “Qualcomm, UNISOC and ASR held the top three positions in the global cellular IoT chipset market in Q4 2021, accounting for nearly 75 per cent of the total shipments. UNISOC, Qualcomm and ASR were the top three players in China. For the rest of the world, Qualcomm led the market, followed by UNISOC and Intel.”

Qualcomm led the global cellular IoT chipset market with a 38 per cent share in terms of shipments. Qualcomm grew its share both annually and sequentially with traction across key segments such as automotive, router/CPE, retail, asset tracking and industrial IoT. UNISOC, the second-largest cellular IoT chipset player globally, has been strong across NB-IoT and 4G Cat 1 technologies. Its cellular IoT chipset shipments growth has continued for nearly last four quarters and is able to fill the gap which HiSilicon left in the market.

Further, ASR Microelectronics maintained its third ranking in the cellular IoT chipset market in Q4 2021 due to strong performance in the 4G Cat 1 and 4G Cat 4 module segments. ASR is providing strong competition to UNISOC for 4G Cat 1 and to Qualcomm for 4G Cat 4 module-based applications lately. MediaTek took the fourth position in the market in Q4 2021. However, it is not much focused on the cellular IoT market compared to the smartphone chipset market. This is one of the key reasons for it to lose 4 per cent market share sequentially in this quarter.

Meanwhile, Neil Shah, vice president, Research, said, “Smart meter, POS, router/CPE, industrial and automotive were the top five applications in terms of shipments in Q4 2021. PC had the maximum growth of 245 per cent YoY, followed by smart meter with 124 per cent YoY and router/CPE with 112 per cent YoY growth. Router/CPE, PC and industrial were the top three applications for 5G. For NB-IoT, smart meters, asset tracking and energy were the top three applications. 4G Cat 1 is becoming popular in the POS, industrial and smart meter segments due to its high performance and low power consumption architecture. We forecast that smart meters, industrial and router/CPE will grow the maximum in the future.”