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The semiconductor industry comprises companies specializing in the development and production of semiconductors and semiconductor devices, such as transistors, diodes, and integrated circuits (ICs).


Semiconductors are an integral component of electronic devices, enabling advances in communications, computing, quantum computing, artificial intelligence, advanced wireless networks, healthcare, military systems, transportation, clean energy, and many other applications.

Moore's law

The semiconductor industry has benefited from the principle observed in Moore's law, which states that the number of transistors in an integrated circuit doubles about every two years. This means that exponentially more advanced products can be produced at an increasingly lower cost. This is exemplified by the fact that smartphones have more computing power than the computers used by NASA in 1969 for the moon landing mission.

US semiconductor industry

The US semiconductor industry is a foremost contributing force to labor productivity across various industries in North America, from farming to manufacturing. Annually, within the industry approximately one-fifth of its revenue is invested into research and development ($44 billion in 2020), making it the second-highest share among all major US industries, topped only by the pharmaceutical industry.

According to the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA), the manufacturing bases of nearly half of US semiconductor companies are located in the United States, and eighteen US states are home to major semiconductor manufacturing facilities. As of 2021, the US semiconductor industry had approximately 47% of global market share and provided and supported over 1,850,000 jobs. This dominant market share has been achieved through sales of $209 billion in 2018, with more than 80% of those sales being to overseas customers.

Data provided by the Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) shows that the top US exports as of July 2021 were refined petroleum ($7.91B), aircraft parts ($7.41B), crude petroleum ($5.69B), petroleum gas ($5.35B), and integrated circuits ($4.74B)—making a semiconductor product the fifth top US export.

Semiconductor market growth and inhibitors
International Data Corporation (IDC)

IDC predicted the semiconductor market to grow by 17.3% in 2021, compared to 10.8% in 2020. According to the IDC, the industry will undergo normalization and balancing by mid-2022, with a potential for overcapacity in 2023 as larger scale capacity expansions begin to occur towards the end of 2022. IDC lists mobile phones, notebooks, servers, automotive, smart home, gaming, wearables, and Wi-Fi access points as some of the growth-driving industries. IDC expects integrated circuit shortages to continue, though easing through 4Q21 as capacity additions accelerate.

Fortune Business Insights
COVID-19 and US-China trade war

Fortune Business Insights projected the growth of the global semiconductor market from $452.25 billion in 2021 to $803.15 billion in 2028 at a CAGR of 8.6% in the forecast period, 2021-2028. According to the research firm, the outbreak of COVID-19 had a significant negative impact on the global semiconductor industry, impeding its growth, which amounted to 3.3% in 2020. The firm also cited the US-China trade war and 2019's down cycle as causes of revenue contraction in the industry.

Fortune Business Insights pointed out that the semiconductor industry is dependent on the economic circumstances of the United States, since North America holds a dominant share in the market. Changes in the country's leadership have resulted in trade restrictions with China since 2018, and the continuation of these restrictions is expected to diminish the dominance of the US semiconductor market, potentially causing around a 16% decrease in market share. Moreover, tariffs applied to industrial goods and materials are impacting the import and export of components, affecting the manufacturing cost of the chips.

Companies involved in the semiconductor industry




Further reading


Documentaries, videos and podcasts





Press Trust of India
September 30, 2021
Semiconductor shortage is hitting the smartphone industry globally with shipment now expected to grow only 6 per cent instead of 9 per cent as previously forecasted
Research and Markets
May 27, 2021
/PRNewswire/ -- The "Applied Materials: Competitive Analysis of Served Markets" company profile from The Information Network has been added to...
Thomas Kaplan
May 11, 2021
The new coalition comes amid a global semiconductor shortage that has caused disruptions throughout the economy.


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