The global smartphone applications processor (AP) market once again defied the COVID-19 pandemic and grew 20% in revenue terms to $5.8 billion in quarter two (Q2) of 2020, according to Strategy AnalyticsHandset Component Technologies (HCT) service report.

The research group says that Qualcomm, HiSilicon, Apple, MediaTek, and Samsung LSI captured the top-five revenue share spots in the global smartphone applications processor (AP) market in the quarter. Qualcomm maintained its lead of the smartphone AP market with a 32% revenue share, followed by HiSilicon with 22% and Apple with 19%.

Strategy Analytics estimates that smartphone AP shipments declined 16 percent year-on-year in Q2 2020, driven by COVID-19-led weakness. However, increased mix of higher-priced 5G APs more than offset this weakness and helped the AP market to register 20 percent year-on-year revenue growth.

Smartphone APs with on-device artificial intelligence (AI) registered strong growth even as the total market declined and accounted for 70 percent of total smartphone APs shipped in Q2 2020, up from 48 percent in Q2 2019. Top-selling smartphone AI APs include Apple A13 Bionic, Qualcomm Snapdragon 765/G and HiSilicon Kirin 990.

Stand-alone AP shipments grew 36 percent as vendors such as Qualcomm and Samsung used stand-alone AP approach to address the flagship 5G market in 2020.