The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) always checks how the worldwide chip industry is doing, and periodically publishes reports for previous quarters and whole years.
Most recently, it posted its findings for the year 2012, and they may be surprising.
In short, the semiconductor sales, that means CPUs, DRAM chips (random access memory), NAND chips (like in SSDs) and all sorts of ICs, showed the third-highest yearly total ever recorded.
For those that want numbers, sales reached $291.6 billion, or 215.62 billion Euro according to exchange rates.
It is actually above the forecast of the World Semiconductor Trade Statistics (WSTS), if only by a tiny bit.
All in all, it was a surprisingly lucrative year, given the “substantial macroeconomic challenges” like “lingering economic and policy uncertainty.”
2011 still holds the top spot, with $299.5 billion / 221.46 billion Euro.