Ruminations on the electronics industry from David Manners, Senior Components Editor on Electronics Weekly.
Units Up ASPs Down For Analogue
The analogue IC ASP is forecast to decline 11% in 2013, but analogue IC units are expected to grow 9%, IC Insights.
Increased competition for design wins in medical/health applications and in portable consumer/communication systems helped drive down the total analogue ASP, but
there was a very strong 14% upturn in analogue IC unit shipments in 2Q13.
IC Insights believes this was due to general inventory rebuilding and but also from growth of portable mobile devices, which have been a catalyst for power management analogue and consumer analogue IC unit growth.
This momentum carried into 3Q13 and well, and was forecast to result in a 9% increase in analogue unit growth. Historically, sales and unit shipments of ICs slow down in the fourth quarter of the year as the buildup to the holiday buying season ends.
For the year, analogue unit shipments are forecast to exceed 100-billion devices for the first time in history and the overall revenue growth is expected to be 1%.
The analogue IC market has struggled to post meaningful sales revenue growth over the past five years.
Contributing to the ASP decline is that many analogue manufacturers have moved production to 200mm wafers (300mm wafers, in some cases), which has helped cut manufacturing costs per die.
Some of the strongest analogue IC unit growth in the first half of 2013 came from power management devices, which help extend useful battery life and operation of battery-powered, portable and mobile systems.
In the application-specific segment, very strong unit growth for communications and Industrial analog devices offset significant declines in consumer and computer analogue shipments in the first half of the year.
IC Insights believes rising sales of personal and portable medical/health electronics contributed to the uptick in Industrial analogue shipments.