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Global inertial sensor market to hit $1.4B in 2019

Posted: 25 Nov 2014 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Yole Developpement? inertial sensor? cellphone? tablet? ST?

Yole Developpement has released a report saying that the global inertial consumer market will grow from $420 million in 2013 to $585 million in 2014, to $1.4 billion in 2019. The increase represents 28 per cent of the global inertial consumer market this year, and will grow to almost 60 per cent by 2019. It also equates to a CAGR of 19 per cent from 2014-2019, stated the market research firm.

Applications in cellphones and tablet computers will drive the market initially but will be replaced by wearable equipment as the main driver of the market, Yole indicated.

Four companies, STMicroelectronics, Bosch Sensortec, InvenSense and Asahi Kasei Microdevices Corp. (AKM), share 75 per cent of the consumer inertial combo sensor market with ST recently losing market share as it lost business with Apple to InvenSense and Bosch, said Yole.

Inertial sensor market

In the overall inertial consumer sensor market, discrete and combo, ST is the leader with 40 per cent market share. InvenSense has about 12 per cent market share, going ahead of Bosch, according to Yole.

"The big four, including AKM, are preparing for the future, with InvenSense holding an advantage as it seems to be ahead in the competition on 9-axis sensors, which are found in a large numbers of products in development, including Google Glass," said Guilaume Girardin, a MEMS and sensors analyst at Yole. "Prices are still dropping sharply, with 6-axis IMUs sold to some large volume customers at less than $1 in 2013," he added.

To stay in competition vendors are introducing technical innovations, including monolithic integrations of 6-axis IMUs within 9-axis components, the use of through-silicon-vias, chip-scale packaging and the use of active die to cap MEMS cavities.

There are challengers eyeing this combo market that expect to take market share even though the supply chain is consolidating. Kionix, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Rohm Semiconductor, Freescale, Alps Electric, Fairchild and Maxim are amongst those targeting this market, stated Yole.

- Peter Clarke
??EE Times Europe

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