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New applications to drive growth in 2015, beyond

Posted: 16 Jan 2015 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IoT? MEMS microphone? microcontroller? sensor?

Pundits have predicted more than 50 billion things connected to the internet by the end of 2020. Those predictions will translate into significant demand for various types of sensors, wireless connectivity, power-related components and microcontrollers.

A majorand perhaps the most market-readysegment of the IoT is wearables, with applications from fitness, industrial, military, infotainment to healthcare. The growth of wearables is greatly supported by the smartphone which currently has an estimated global user base of 1.7 billion, approximately 1 in 4 of the world's population and is expected to reach a third by 2018.1 Smartphones are the default connection hub for wearable devices to carry out the role of interface, control, data logging and, of course, the actual connection to the internet.

The building blocks for wearables are somewhat similar to IoT but with an emphasis on technologies for miniaturisation and ultra-portability; wearables need to be small and light enough to carry around all day and run on very low power. The rapid adoption of wearables is driving growth for ultra-low power microcontrollers, tiny sensor modules, highly efficient power management chips and low-power wireless connectivity.

CaddieOn

Figure 2: Sensors, microcontrollers and connectivity are the basic building blocks of wearables, such as the golf-play analyser by CaddieOn.

The year 2015 and beyond are promising and challenging. Looking at the macroeconomic environment of Asia, according to E&Y, there are already 525 million people in Asia who are middle class and this figure will grow by another three billion in the next two decades.2

The rise of this massive Asian middle class demographic is running head-on into the always-on-and-connected lifestyle and culture. Demand from this tech-savvy group will be the engine that drives innovation and growth for at least a generation to come. Thus, the IoT will thrive in Asia, thanks to this demographic group.

- Francois Guibert
??Executive VP and President, Greater China & South Asia Region
??STMicroelectronics

Reference:

  1. Worldwide Smartphone Usage to Grow 25% in 2014
  2. Press release on the Hitting The Sweet Spot report by Ernst &Young


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