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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?

We will see convergence in the TV space as well. To manage healthy profits amidst continued price erosion coupled with rising panel costs, the TV industry will need to innovate beyond the "expected" realms. Next-generation TVs will no longer be just about pixels. They will need to move beyond resolution and differentiate themselves. DTVs will be increasingly network enabled and tap into video convergence with the Web. In-Stat stated that DTVs are competing with computers to be the entertainment hub of the home. Sets with Internet connectivity are already commercially available in the United States, Europe and Japan. DTV revenue in Asia-Pacific is forecast to show rapid growth.

Silicon embedded systems enabled convergence in the automotive sector. As automotive digital electronic systems and onboard networks increase, so will the semiconductor content required for designing them. Several of these automotive electronics applications originated from the consumer market. Digital content like navigation systems, rear seat entertainment systems and driver assistance applications will continue to increase. There is also an evolving trend of the applications battling as value-add in the automotive market for infotainment and telematics services to the customer.

2010 will also see an increasing trend toward convergence of video with computing and connectivity in the intelligent surveillance space as well.

Green growth
The other major market trend affecting the electronics design business is "green technology." Green thinking will get more pervasive in 2010. Lighting and automotive sectors are two main areas for this.

Finding ways to harness technology and helping customers implement it will translate into creating energy-efficient lighting like low-powered LEDs in automobiles, consumer electronics and conventional lighting or innovative products using solar panels. Maximum power-point tracker (MPPT) charge controllers as well as solar inverters are needed along with solar panels, and they will fuel this growth. New uses for optoelectronics such as infrared illumination for applications like night vision cameras, security and video surveillance will grow as well. Government policies to promote power efficiency will be a key driver for the OLED lighting market.

The automotive sector is also ready for a higher energy efficiency approach. Power electronics is a key technology for hybrids and represents 20 percent of the material costs. The power module market, today dominated by Toyota who manufactures the module internally, will see the entry of semiconductor companies like Infineon, Fujitsu, Mitsubishi and STMicroelectronics. A shift to more fuel-efficient vehicles for commercial and consumer markets will create opportunities in this market.

Regional outlook
Coming to regional impact and outlook, while the economy meltdown was felt everywhere, some countries, like China and India, were able to cushion the impact better than others. With the interdependent link between the electronics industry and the GDP, there are strong indicators that with the global GDP turning positive, the electronics industry is well-positioned for recovery. Couple that with U.S. and China stimulus packages totaling $1.4 trillion dollars much of which is to be spent in 2010.

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