As seen in the case of Qualcomm, although it is, of course, actively pursuing emerging wireless power applications for mobile devices and electric vehicles, this represents a natural extension of its core wireless signal business, rather than an entry into the broader analog IC business domain.
An “Analog IC Company” is defined as an IC vendor that develops designs, and sells ICs that are confined to the analog part of the Analog-Digital spectrum of an IC’s functional content. These ICs feature either a nearly 100 percent analog or an analog-intensive functional content. They could be function specific (i.e., general purpose) (e.g. an operational amplifier) or application specific (i.e., ASSP) (e.g. an RF power amplifier).
Representative companies focusing on the function specific products include traditional analog IC companies, such as TI, Analog Devices, Maxim, and Linear Technology. Representative companies focusing on the ASSPs include STMicroelectronics, Infineon, NXP, and Skyworks Solutions.
A nice try from DataBeans but I think that one should stick with a far more precise classification of what defines an Analog IC vendor - selling analog ICs on open market -- usually to tens of thousands customers.
Two key attributes of an Analog IC Company include:
1. Analog and analog-intensive ICs represent the company’s primary and dominant business in terms of revenues and product portfolio.
2. The company addresses and competes in the broader analog market featuring thousands of users (so-called horizontal markets).
Some IC vendors occupying the middle, mixed-signal, part of the Analog-Digital spectrum also provide power management ICs, typically as part of their chipsets, such as Qualcomm. However, these companies should be excluded in Analog IC company rankings since they do not meet both above criteria.
Qualcomm uses its mixed-signal ICs in its own chipsets which it sells to its OEM customers. The classification problem is the boundary between the analog/analog-intensive and mixed-signal parts of the Analog-Digital spectrum which is vaguely defined; hence, left to interpretations.
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