SAN FRANCISCO Comparators, chips used to measure two different voltages, will be the fastest growing semiconductor product segment in 2006, with projected growth of 37 percent, according to estimates released Wednesday (Dec. 20) by market research analyst firm IC Insights.
Among the projected top 10 fastest growing chip categories for the year are five products from the analog segment, three from memory and two logic segments, IC Insights (Scottsdale, Ariz.) said.
Industrial/Other Application-Specific Analog ICs is expected to be the second fastest growing product segment, growing at a projected 31 percent, IC Insights said. Other analog product segments in the top 10 include Consumer Application-Specific (No. 5), Voltage Regulators and References (No. 9) and Automotive Application-Specific (No. 10), IC Insights said.
The DRAM market is projected to grow 27 percent in 2006, ranking as the third fastest growing product category for the year, IC Insights said. Two other memory segments, EEPROM/Other (No. 4, 25% growth) and ROM (No. 66, 22 percent), will rank in the top 10, IC Insights said.
According to the firm, new video games and gaming consoles such as Sony's Playstation 3 and Microsoft's Xbox 360 contributed to the forecasted nonvolatile memory growth. Sales of portable, handheld, consumer tools and gaming platform also contributed to growth in this segment, IC Insights said.
Two product segmentsAutomotive-Special Purpose Logic/MPR and Voltage
Regulators and Referencesalso showed up on IC Insights' top 10 list in 2006. Collectively, the top 10 product categories are forecast to grow 24 percent in 2006, compared to 19 percent for the top 10 products in 2005, the firm said.
In total, 18 product categories are forecast to outpace the 8 percent growth of the total IC market in 2006, IC Insights said, while another five categories are expected to show positive but slower growth than the overall IC market. Seven product categories are forecast to show negative market growth, IC Insights said.
See projected top 10 growth categories