Intel has been the biggest chip maker for many years now, but that seems to have changed. TSMC, the chip manufacturer for NVIDIA, Qualcomm, and AMD amongst others, has now surpassed Intel as the world's largest chip maker. In the second quarter of 2013, TSMC has sold $11.98 billion worth of semiconductors, while Intel has "only" sold for $11.79 billion. To further this lead, TSMC is preparing its four 8 inch wafer plants to meet the demands of the emerging wearable device market, such as Samsung's new Galaxy Gear smart watch. The data comes from market research firm IC Insights, who also states that the global semiconductor market is estimated to be worth $271 billion this year, and wafer foundries will account for more than 16 percent of that.
Intel has not gone in the defensive position though, as the chip maker is making its way into handheld devices with its new Bay Trail T chips. And TSMC might be ahead in chip sales, but Intel is still the big brother with a full year revenue of $53.3 billion against TSMC's full year revenue of $17.1 billion.