LONDON The total silicon opportunity for digital photo frame suppliers will exceed $550 million by 2013, according to market research group InStat.
Microcontrollers are said to represent the largest opportunity in non-wireless enabled devices.
In a major study of the sector, InStat also found that the bill of materials for a wireless 8-inch digital photo frame will fall below $36 by 2013, with the LCD, the wireless module and the enclosure being the dominant cost items.
The researchers predict worldwide unit shipments for all types of digital photo frames will reach 50 million by 2013.
However because of the trend to purchase digital photo frames as gifts pre-loaded with pictures, most units shipped still lack advanced features such as wireless connectivity to the Internet. Nevertheless, wireless-enabled photo frames are a key growth driver as they will grow at twice the rate of overall digital photo frames in 2010.
"Prices for connected frames will continue to decline, and as manufacturers educate consumers about these devices; the mass market will become more comfortable using the Internet services connected frames support," says Stephanie Ethier, In-Stat analyst.
Ethier adds applications such as sharing and downloading pictures over the Internet, as well as streaming Internet radio and video from online sites like YouTube, will be the main drivers in the sector.
Some of the major digital photo frame vendors and their silicon providers are said to include HP, Kodak, Pandigital, Philips, Samsung, Sony, RMI Corporation, Marvell Technology Group, and Samsung Electronics.
** Separately, Conexant said Tuesday (June 30) it has started sampling a range of SoCs targeting the connected photo frame and interactive display appliances market.
The parts integrate integrate Internet connectivity and touch-screen technology. The CX92735 supports streaming media content, MP3 audio playback with slideshow functionality, and Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Ethernet connectivity.
The device integrates an ARM9 processor with a vector floating point unit and a dedicated image processor, which simultaneously processes streamed content.
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