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Jul 17th, 2013
Growth of consumer applications is pushing new strategies for MEMS companies
“Status of the MEMS Industry 2013”, a report from Yole Développement
Yole Développement is pleased to announce the 10th edition of its MEMS best seller: Status of the MEMS Industry report. In this 2013 edition, Yole Développement goes further in the MEMS industry analysis and its evolution, from key technical aspects to business strategies of the TOP30 MEMS companies. Yole Développement’s report covers more than 220 MEMS devices & applications (automotive, consumer, medical, defense & aeronautics, industry & telecommunications), analyses the major MEMS manufacturing changes and a new chapter dedicated to ASICs for MEMS.
MEMS is still on a dynamic growth path, targeting US$22.5B in 2018
Yole Développement’s report shows markets for inkjet heads and DLPs have matured, but we see huge growth on the horizon for combination inertial sensors and for MEMS timing devices. Combination inertial sensors are starting to see high volume adoption in both consumer and automotive markets, and will quickly account for a significant part of inertial sensor sales. Yole Développement’s report identifies new innovative MEMS devices that continue to emerge. The analysts expect to see a number of them start production, though not reach significant volumes for a few years. MEMS autofocus could come to market shortly. Big smartphone players are now looking at adding environmental sensors for heat and humidity, and MEMS devices could win those slots.
Yole Développement’s report shows how the results of MEMS players Top 30 and companies with the largest growth clarify just how much the smartphone market is driving MEMS demand. AAC Technologies had strong sales of MEMS microphones that propelled them to 90% growth and $65 million in MEMS revenues, putting them in the Top 30 for the first time. More microphones in more phones also helped propel sales to grow more than 20% at both Infineon and Knowles.
Yole Développement’s analysis shows that very few MEMS players have more than one device in production. Only big manufacturers such as STMicroelectronics or Robert Bosch have different devices in production. Although there are many MEMS devices that have been in development for many years now (auto focus, micro fuel cells …), Yole Développement’s analysis shows that crossing the gap from development to industrialization is still challenging.
“Consumer and mobile applications are the fastest growing areas for MEMS, having a strong impact on many developments happening at the moment”, notes Laurent Robin, Activity Leader, Inertial MEMS Devices & Technologies at Yole Développement. The report shows that pressure sensors started to be produced in large volumes for cell phone applications in 2012 and MEMS microphones are still growing, boosted by the integration of multiple microphones in smartphones. It is interesting to note the market for standalone accelerometers is decreasing as mobile devices increasingly use combo sensors. There is high demand for compact devices, partially offset by the growth of 6-axis e-compass for low-end smartphones. Adoption of 6-axis IMUs is now strong and 9-axis combos should follow within a few years. This push from the consumer side drives MEMS players to adopt new strategies.
ASIC players will also benefit from the MEMS market boost
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