Last Updated on October 22, 2023 by Kevin Chen
Analog integrated circuits are specialized electronic components that are designed to process continuous electric signals. The construction of analog integrated circuits is similar to other ICs; it entails the placement of the connected electronic components on a single semiconductor wafer. They are commonly used in different application areas including the automotive industry, power management, audio systems, and communication devices among many others. Analog ICs are usually preferred in applications where accuracy is required in signal management. They are also used in applications where the flow of signals is in continuous mode. They are different from the digital integrated circuits in which signals exist in two states; On and Off.
What is the current state of the analog integrated circuits? Do they have a future or will they be phased out? In this article, we are going to look at the innovations and trends in the analog ICs. We will also highlight what the future holds for these types of integrated circuits.
Market analysis of the Analog integrated circuits
To understand where we are and where we are going, it will be prudent to have a brief outlook on the market data about the ICs. The Global market size of the analog integrated circuit in 2023 is estimated to be $91.62 billion. The size is expected to hit $129.40 billion by 2028, giving a CAGR of 7.15%.
There are several factors that are considered to be the drivers of this market growth. At the top of the list is the proliferation of smart and portable devices such as smartphones and tablets. The expansion of the 5G technology and the Internet of Things (IoT) are among the other drivers that will push this market to the next level.
Why are the smartphones predicted to determine the future of the analog integrated circuits? Well, according to the data published by BankMyCell, the total number of smartphone users in as of July 2023 stood at 6.92 billion. Smartphones are among the devices that heavily rely on analog integrated circuits for communication and power management.
Industry segmentation of the analog integrated circuits
While the figures from the market analysis reveal the general performance of the analog integrated circuits, the trends and performance tend to vary from one industry to another. This mainly stems from the fact that these integrated circuits have a wide range of applications. They are used in basic digital consumer products such as audio systems to the automotive and industrial machinery.
The segmentation mainly comprises the application-specific analog integrated circuits and the general-purpose analog integrated circuits. Both types of analog integrated circuits are applicable and usable in different electric devices.
General-purpose integrated circuits are used for functions such as power management, interface management, signal conversion, amplification, and signal conditioning. Take note that in all these circuits the nature of the signals is continuous.
When it comes to application-specific analog integrated circuits, we have to consider ICs that are specifically customized to meet the needs of different application areas. Some of these segmentations include:
- Consumer electronics where analog integrated circuits are used in audio systems, video systems, camera recorders, and other electronic devices
- Automotive electronics: Here you will have to think of electronic devices such as infotainment, fleet management, and remote monitoring systems among others
- Communication systems: This segment of analog integrated circuits is specifically designed to meet communication needs. They support different communication protocols. Mobile phones, communication infrastructures, wired devices, and wireless devices fall under this category.
- Other market segments include industrial, security, and government.
The automotive industry expected to experience a s surge
Other than smartphones, the automotive industry is another segment that is expected to take the largest share of analog integrated circuits. It is easy to point out that currently, the automotive industry is characterized by new innovations and inventions, all of which are directly connected to the electronics industry.
One of the biggest developments is the invention of the electric vehicles (EVs). In the recent years, there has been a strong push to replace the ICE vehicles with electric-powered vehicles. Since EVs will directly rely on the electric energy, the demand for the analog integrated circuits will definitely be high. As we have mentioned, these ICs are pretty good at performing power management functions in their respective application areas.
Still, in the automotive industry, even modern fuel-powered vehicles are packed with numerous advanced features most of which rely on electronic components. Some of these features include the Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) that are designed to take the driving experience to the next level. These systems use digital integrated circuits for both power and signal management.
Since no single automaker wants to be left behind, we expect to see more of these integrated circuits being incorporated
Demand for data-intensive applications
Data and networking are not only trending but also poised to define the future of analog integrated circuits. Data applications such as big data, artificial intelligence and machine learning require proper and stable hardware support. Analog integrated circuits can support this as they have the ability to facilitate the continuous streaming of the data signals. The ICs are used in data transmitters and as well as receivers.
When it comes to networking, 5G technology is the current trend. It is a high-speed network standard for the wireless devices. Analog integrated circuits are playing a critical role in the advancement of the 5G technology and this trend is expected to continue.
Analog ICs to define the future of technology
It is clear that analog integrated circuits are defining the current and the future of technology. Technically, they are part of every emerging technology. Further development of the IC technology will make these integrated circuits more relevant in the coming years.
Also, according to the market data, China is expected to be a market leader in analog integrated circuits. This is based on its position as the world’s manufacturing hub. This also means that you are likely to find reputable analog chip suppliers and distributors in China.
If you want to find more Electronic Components Distributors, please check out the following articles:
- The Art of Sourcing: How We Identify and Partner with Top IC Manufacturers - November 24, 2023
- Essential Electronics Test Equipment You Should Know About - November 24, 2023
- How To Finish PCBA Design Process Quickly? - November 24, 2023