Is the MEMS market going fabless?

Strong price pressure will limit revenue growth in the market for MEMS devices and encouraging the growth of new fabless suppliers, according to market research company Yole Développement.

MEMS devices (Source: STMicroelectronics)

MEMS devices (Source: STMicroelectronics)

The French analyst estimates that the MEMS market is seeing 7% fall in prices each year.

Interestingly the MEMS companies which are showing strong growth are fabless.

The fabless model, which now plays such a large part of the semiconductor IC market, looks likely to have a big impact on the MEMS market in the next few years.

New suppliers in the market are most likely to be fabless.

Source : Yole - MEMS market July 2014

Source : Yole – MEMS market July 2014

It is consumer applications which are the big drivers for the MEMS market which grew by 10.4% in 2013, reaching $12bn.

But according to Yole, price opresurte will limit market growth and from 2013-2019 consumer market revenue will only grow modestly at 13%.

“If we look at the top MEMS players, we see that STMicroelectronics, while still producing at high volume, is struggling to stop the decrease of the price of its own products – even though it’s shown impressive growth over the last several years, and reached US$1B sales in 2012 – the first MEMS company to do so”, said Dr Eric Mounier, senior, technology & market analyst, MEMS devices & technologies at Yole.

The big suppliers are STMicroelectronics, Analog Devices, Robert Bosch and Knowles, while InvenSense is a fast growing fabless MEMS company.



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