Laptops with x86 processors from the likes of AMD and Intel continue to dominate, but that balance could be shifting somewhat notably in the years ahead. Counterpoint, a global industry analysis firm headquartered in Hong Kong, has shared a new analysis that suggests Arm-based laptops will achieve 25% market share in five years, largely fueled by devices that include Apple’s new Macs with Arm-based SoCs. The first of these launched in 2020 but already constitute 90% of the Arm laptop market, according to data derived from 2022, while Qualcomm and MediaTek, two companies that are no stranger to Arm technologies, are expected to enjoy 50% growth YoY with Arm laptops by 2025.
From a Counterpoint report:
Apple launched its in-house M1 chip for the MacBook series in 2020. This gradually allowed iPhone and iPad apps to seamlessly operate on MacOS with state-of-the-art power consumption management and battery life among the M1 MacBook’s head-to-head competing features with the same level of computing performance. Since then, the market share of Arm-based laptops started to increase, from less than 2% to over 12% at the end of 2022, according to Counterpoint Research data. Apple dominated the Arm laptop market in 2022 with a 90% share. Apple’s migration to its self-designed CPU has proved to be a shot in the arm for vendors who were sitting on the fence looking forward to developing Arm-based solutions.
Major global CPU providers Qualcomm and MediaTek have also expressed their interest in Arm-based solutions. As the two are experienced smartphone CPU vendors, they have worked with the Arm ecosystem for many years. Therefore, it would not be a very difficult mission for them to include Arm-based laptops/PCs in their product road maps. Although there have been some delays due to reasons like component shortages, lawsuit and product development, the two chip design giants are expected to launch Arm-based laptop solutions no later than 2024 to support incremental demand. We expect Qualcomm and MediaTek’s solutions to see over 50% growth YoY on Arm laptops in 2024-2025.
Arm’s share gains will inevitably come at the expense of mainly two other major vendors in the market – Intel and AMD. Based on our forecasts, we believe Arm could ultimately take around 25% share of the laptop market by the end of 2027. On the other hand, as the largest vendor in the PC market, Intel will suffer the most, losing almost 10% share to Arm solutions in five years. But it will still dominate the PC market with over 60% share.