According to iSuppli, Apple purchased chips for $17.5 billion in 2010, which represents an 80% increase from $9.7 billion in 2009. The growth was strong enough to surpass HP as well as Samsung last year.
The main reasons for the massive growth is Apple's success in the smartphone and tablet space, which requires the company to purchase huge amounts of flash memory. iSuppli believes that Apple will continue to grow - and continue to outgrow other chip buyers. 61% of Apple's chip purchases in 2010 were related to the iPhone, iPad and iPod. In comparison, HP spent 82% of its chip purchases on desktop, server and notebook products.
HP is estimated to have spent $15.1 billion on semiconductors in 2010. iSuppli believes that HP's spending will contract in 2011, while Apple's spending will exceed $22 billion this year and top HP's spending by about $7.5 billion.