I guess it was just a matter of time before we achieved the next "Number 1" status. According to a report released by Forward Concepts, handsets are now the largest consumer of audio ICs.
Its latest market research report, "Audio Chip Markets: The Foundation of Multimedia" report chronicles the history of audio and its many formats and the introduction of multimedia capabilities with the original Sound Blaster PC card introduced in 1988.
Key study findings in the report are:
- Mobile handset ring-tone and MP3 melody chips already constitute a billion-dollar market and will continue to be the largest class of audio chips through 2010.
- MP3-type player chips will continue strong growth from the 100-million-plus unit level in 2005 for the next two years, after which we predict that the personal player market will begin to be subsumed by the handset as the primary personal audio vehicle.
- Digital Class D audio amplifiers continue to gain market share against traditional linear amplifiers in a number of applications because of their power efficiency and smaller sizes.