BOSTON -- Gallium-arsenide (GaAs) devices will remain the predominant technology in the fiber-optic analog IC market, but suppliers of these products must reduce their costs to compete against silicon germanium (SiGe) chips, according to a new report from Strategy Analytics Inc.
The GaAs-based fiber-optic analog IC market is expected to grow at an annual rate of 34%, from $350 million in 1999 to $1.621 billion by 2004, according to the Boston-based research house.
"While the current economic malaise has resulted in GaAs companies revising projected earnings, the fiber-optics market for analog ICs will provide a growth market for the GaAs industry," observed analysts Asif Anwar, who tracks the industry for Strategy Analytics.
"The 10-gigabits-per-second market will become the largest market and will be dominated by GaAs technology," he said. "However, GaAs companies will have to significantly reduce ASPs in the near future if they are to remain competitive in the face of an onslaught from SiGe."
There are some other technology trends as well. The market for fiber-optic analog ICs is moving from bare dies to module, he said.
Furthermore, there will be increased integration of TIAs with the photodetector diodes in small form factor modules for use in the emerging Gigabit Ethernet and fibre channel datacom markets, he said.
Moving forward, the 40-gigabits-per-second business is expected to become the second largest market for fiber-optic systems by 2004 and will be dominated by indium phosphide (InP), he added.