Qualcomm has long dominated the Android smartphone market, but it seems times are changing. It’s possible that MediaTek has taken the top slot in the US from Qualcomm, and the IDC says that Google Tensor is at least partially to blame for Qualcomm losing its seat.

There’s a dispute between Qualcomm and MediaTek right now as to who holds the top slot as the most popular Android chipmaker in the US. Counterpoint claims Qualcomm holds the top slot, while the IDC claims MediaTek has taken the lead as of late last year. Regardless of which is actually true, Qualcomm’s lead is certainly shrinking.

According to mobile phone research director at IDC, Anthony Scarsella, Google Tensor was partially to blame for Qualcomm losing the top slot. Speaking to PCMag, Scarsella said that Google “abandoning” Qualcomm in its Pixel 6 series contributed to Qualcomm’s downfall in Q4, and that MediaTek “wouldn’t have gained the lead” if Google has gone another year with a Snapdragon chip.

Google also played a role by abandoning Qualcomm for its own Tensor chipset. If Google had stuck with Qualcomm, MediaTek wouldn’t have gained the lead, Scarsella said.

Google’s Pixel 6 series broke sales records last year to a moderate degree. So while Google’s lineup still wouldn’t have the same impact as say, Samsung switching to another chipset, it probably did make a dent in Qualcomm’s bottom line. When Google Tensor was announced last August, Qualcomm stock dipped in the hours following the announcement. Qualcomm later mocked Google’s transition on social media.

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