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Hot buttons for 2010: Convergence, green tech

Posted: 04 Feb 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:convergence? green technology? ASEAN?

Sarin: I see two main market trends that will have the greatest impact in 2010: convergence and green technology.

While last year was bad for the economy, this recession saw most business sectors quick to react and able to absorb the impact better than they did in the past. The year saw a lot of restructuring, quick alignment of the inventory levels to lower demand and constrained capital spending. Now, based on improving macroeconomic indicators and rising surge in demand trends, industry leaders and analysts concur that the world is emerging from the global recession.

So what will 2010 usher? What will it hold for electronics design engineers and managers, particularly those in the ASEAN and India? What market trends will have the greatest impact on the electronics design business? I share here some of my insights.

While consumer, computing and the communication sectors will continue to drive the growth, broadly speaking, I see two main market trends that will have the greatest impact in this space in 2010. They are: convergence and green technology.

Convergence will continue to power collaboration applications. Portable consumer devices, including such devices as mobile phone handsets, smart phones, mobile Internet devices (MIDs), personal navigation systems and e-books, will see new classes: multifunction products with multiple connectivity options bolstered by greater battery life and set on decreasing form factors. Convergence of mobility and the Web will increase, and these devices will proliferate. More specifically and of gaining importance, application developers will flood this market with innovative ideas on the usage and value-added services for these products, thereby adding to their increasing differentiation.

According to ABI Research, the number of paying handset-based turn-by-turn navigation users will increase to 26 million by 2010 end, with strongest growth expected in the Asia-Pacific, which is in contrast to the continuing decline in sales of personal navigation devices (PNDs) and in-dash navigation systems.

The year 2009 was one in which notebook shipments overtook those of the desktop for the first time. Expect this to continue in 2010. Netbooks have attempted to fill the void between clunky notebooks and small smart phones/MIDs. This year will see more of "all-day runtime, instant-on and smartphone connectivity melded with the keyboard and usability of a netbook" kind of devices. Here too, applications (like those for Apple's iPhone) can be tapped for these computing devices.

I also expect smartbooks and MIDs to ship with near-ubiquitous 3G/LTE connectivity. With carriers becoming a significant channel for all Internet-connected mobile devices including netbooks and mobile PCs because of the revenue potential of the associated services, expect the number of devices sold through the carriers to increase.

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