Although PC makers are feeling the pinch, Intel actually posted a surprisingly decent quarter yesterday. But Intel’s still feeling a big pinch from ARM, which is just showing explosive growth, shipping 35% more ARM-based chips (like, yes, Apple’s A-series SoCs) than it did a year ago.
According to financial results released Tuesday, ARM Holdings — the British semiconductor design company — has seen revenue shoot up 26% year-over-year to nearly $264 million, with profits of around $146 million, a 44% increase.
Those numbers might look like peanuts compared to the billions in profits Apple is likely to post, but you need to keep in mind that ARM is actually a fairly small company. They don’t build or fab their chips themselves, which is where all the money is (look at Intel): they simply license out their designs to companies like Apple and Samsung, who then use the technology, tweak it, and release their own chips based upon the design.
So while ARM’s numbers aren’t gangbusters, they are very representative of a trend through the industry as a whole. ARM as a company might not be a monolith like Intel, but the chips based upon their technology are becoming the new standard.