Global Mobile Device MEMS Market (hereafter referred to as the market under study) was valued at USD 5.48 Billion in 2021. It is expected to be worth USD 9.55 Billion by 2027, registering a CAGR of 9.
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31% between 2022 and 2027 (hereafter referred to as the forecast period).
The evolution and development of technologies have had a significant impact on the design of MEMS sensors. In particular, electronics industry developments towards consumer electronics and smart devices are mainly driven by technology trends, consumer preferences, etc. These trends drive the need for miniaturization of MEMS sensors.
With an increase in demand for accelerometers and gyroscopes in smartphones, the MEMS market for mobile devices is expected to grow significantly over the forecast period, owing to the large number of devices being shipped globally. For example, in 2021, the total number of mobile subscriptions worldwide was around 6.3 billion and is expected to grow further, according to Ericsson forecasts.
The trend to reduce the power consumption of MEMS devices has significantly characterized the studied market. Additionally, changing consumer dynamics such as increasing fast and minimized charging times and charging optimization are driving the need for sensors in smart mobile devices as they are developed to reduce the power consumption, greatly reducing the charging time required.
Device miniaturization is one of the major factors driving the demand for MEMS in mobile devices. With the size of end devices shrinking, manufacturers are constantly looking for ways to upgrade their technology to reap the benefits.
MEMS devices vary from simple structure to complex systems with multiple elements under the control of embedded microelectronics. This creates a significant challenge when it comes to manufacturing MEMS-based sensors. The development cycle for MEMS-based sensors is long due to the complexity of the design. CAD tools currently in use are time consuming for the design cycle with increasing complexity.
The effect of COVID-19 on the mobile device market has been moderate. Additionally, the pandemic is changing the perception of the current global supply chain in manufacturing, potentially leading to more localized value chains and further regionalization to minimize similar risks in the near future.
Main market trends
Fingerprint sensors will experience tremendous growth
Fingerprint authentication is more secure than conventional methods because the latter are based on passwords and personal identification numbers (PINs). Fingerprint sensing technology is rapidly being adopted in consumer devices, such as smartphones and tablets, due to its popularity and unique characteristics, such as the ability to capture each individual’s characteristics, such as ridges, valleys and detail points. The increasing adoption of smartphones with fingerprint technology due to the speed and simple unlocking process has created a need for MEMS sensors.
To capitalize on the market, in February 2022, Fingerprint Cards AB announced that the curved FPC1552, the company’s second-generation thin and curved capacitive touch sensor, was integrated into Xiaomi’s recently launched Redmi K50. The fingerprint sensor is placed on the side of the phone and has a curved surface for more seamless integration. It enables a range of the latest smartphone designs, including borderless and foldable phones, to enhance the user experience beyond providing a convenient and secure method of authentication, acting as a power button, volume control, using the camera shutter and scrolling.
There are three main types of fingerprint scanners: ultrasonic, capacitive, and optical. As their name suggests, optical fingerprint sensors rely on capturing an optical image, essentially a photograph, using algorithms to detect unique patterns on the surface, such as distinctive ridges or marks, by analyzing the lightest and darkest areas of the image. As it was adopted earlier in the research, it is the dominant technology in the market.
The main problem with optical sensors or scanners is that they are not difficult to replicate. The technology only captures a 2D image, conceding the manipulation of distinct designs to good quality prostheses and photographs. Therefore, this technology should be replaced, even if new techniques are being developed. Synaptics, which develops a line of scanners for smartphones and other products, has unveiled its Natural ID FS9100 optical fingerprint sensor. The module can successfully operate under 1mm of glass and with wet fingers, which usually confuses capacitive alternatives.
Additionally, Huawei seems to be working on improving the efficiency of the optical fingerprint scanner. In December 2021, Huawei published a patent for the fingerprint identification method and its electronic equipment and media, detailing an innovative technology that will improve fingerprint identification.
Asia-Pacific is expected to hold a significant market share
The large demand for smartphones from countries such as India, China, Japan and South Korea is encouraging many vendors to set up production facilities in the region. The availability of raw materials, as well as low establishment and labor costs, have also motivated companies to establish their production centers in the region. Apart from the advantages of manufacturing, high demand and rapid growth are also attracting mobile phone companies to set up their production facilities in the Asia-Pacific region.
According to the most recent figures given by the Chinese government, Chinese subscribers are flocking to buy expensive new 5G cellphones. 5G phone shipments in China topped 266 million units in 2021, a 63.5% increase from a year earlier. 5G accounted for 75.9 percent of total mobile phone shipments, according to data from the Chinese Academy of Information and Communication Technology (CAICT).
Xiaomi will open two new mobile manufacturing units and a TV manufacturing plant in India. One of the two mobile manufacturing units is now operational and the company has worked with DBG India to run the Haryana plant. BYD, a Chinese electronics company, will build the second factory in Tamil Nadu.
Additionally, in January 2021, Samsung introduced its new Samsung ISOCELL GN2, a new 50 MP image sensor. It includes features such as a large 1.4 micrometer (μm) pixel, an improvement over its predecessor ISOCELL GN1 which offered up to 100MP imaging, powerful HDR, improved autofocus with technology Dual Pixel Pro and brilliant results via Smart ISO Pro in any lighting environment. The GN2 supports Full HD video at 480 fps or 4K video at 120 fps for wider mobile video shooting capabilities. Continued updates to its current offerings are expected to increase adoption of these innovative sensors by smartphone manufacturers.
The MEMS market is replete with large-scale vendors capable of forward and backward integration and with significant revenue generation capabilities. The intensity of competitive rivalry in the market is moderately high and is expected to increase in the coming years
February 2022 – Bosch SensorTech GMBH expands its wafer factory in Reutlingen to tackle the current global chip shortage. More than 250 million euros will be invested in the construction of new production space by 2025 and the necessary clean rooms. With this, Bosch will be able to meet the ever-increasing demand for chips used in mobility and IoT applications.
August 2021 – Analog Devices Inc. has completed the acquisition of Maxim Integrated Products Inc. Maxim is a privately held company that develops industry-leading analog and mixed-signal products and solutions. The acquisition will further strengthen the company’s position as a high-performance analog semiconductor company.
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