UK suppliers see sensor opportunity with IoT

Graham Maggs, marketing director at Mouser Electronics, believes sensors and other IoT devices will be the main attraction for design engineers from SMEs and big names companies attending the Southern Manufacturing and Electronics in Farnborough, UK exhibition this week.

Graham Maggs - UK suppliers see sensor opportunity with IoT

Graham Maggs

Whilst most market predictions across Europe are for flat or slightly positive growth this year, in January Mouser has already seen better-than-anticipated growth figures of up to 15%. And 2015 ended positively for us too; we posted November and December figures which showed a strong market bounce back after a disappointing previous quarter.

But of course, market-watchers need to remember that Mouser mostly plays in a different space from many other distributors. While all the other companies look eventually for volume sales, we are mainly interested in supporting design activities. To support this new product introductions are important to us.

This can be a barometer of how healthy the level of design activity is at any one time. On this basis, Europe is still a vital area.

The internet of things (IoT) may be a zeitgeist term, but many new projects will be able to be classed as such – even if the preferred term may be ‘Industry 4.0 or Smart Factory’ involving advanced factory automation, ‘remote metering’, the ‘Intelligent home/office/workspace’, or even ‘wearables’  such as a home diagnostics medical design.

Although IoT covers these diverse applications and a huge number of others besides, the thing they all share one thing in common is that they all need sensors.

Semiconductors may lead IoT design, but sensors, given the vital role they play as discussed in the development of IoT systems, are also vital.
Recent new examples are:

  • Texas Instruments’ HDC1050 low power digital humidity sensor with integrated temperature sensor.
  • Honeywell magneto-resistive speed or position sensors ICs.
  • Ambient light sensor ICs from Silicon Labs include dual 23-bit analogue-to-digital converters, integrated high-sensitivity array of UV, visible and infrared photodiodes and digital signal processor.
  • Pressure sensing modules from Kavlico based on ceramic capacitive sensing technology.


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