MANHASSET, NY--Worldwide touch screen industry is on track for more than 30 percent Y/Y growth in 2010, according to market follower DisplaySearch.
"Despite the worldwide economic downturn and sluggish recovery in 2010, total touch panel shipments had almost 30 percent growth in 2009, and this segment is on track for healthy growth again in 2010," noted Jennifer Colegrove, Vice President of Emerging Display Technologies for DisplaySearch.
"Penetration of touch screens in medium and large-size electronic devices such as mini-note/slate PCs and gaming is rapidly increasing in 2H'10," added Colegrove.
The mini-note/slate PC category is the fastest growing application for touch screens in 2010, with 6.3 million shipped in the first half. More than 20 million units planned in the second half of the year but some shipments may be delayed to Q1’11. A majority of the mini-note/slate PC touch shipments are from Wintek, who led in the segment, followed by TPK Touch Solutions.
In its Q4’10 Touch Panel Market Analysis update DisplaySearch estimates are made for the second half of the year for 32 leading touch screen suppliers .
Among key findings in the update:
* Taiwan is the leading region in terms of shipments and revenues. According to a DisplaySearch survey, Taiwan’s share of worldwide touch screen shipments accounted for 43.5 percent in 2009. Taiwanese suppliers, especially in projected capacitive, are benefiting from the growth in mini-note/slate PCs. Capacity expansions are under way for 2011 as well.
* Most Chinese touch suppliers are manufacturing resistive type touch screens, and projected capacitive capacity is still limited to factories built by Taiwanese and Japanese suppliers.
* Suppliers of touch controller ICs in the U.S. and Europe are reaching record high shipments in 2010.
* Most Japanese touch suppliers will have flat growth in 2010 over 2009, due to the strength of the Japanese yen.
* ITO replacement materials are being used in touch screens in 2010.
* Infrared type touch screens were adopted by e-books in 2010.
* In 2010, projected capacitive is expected to become the leading touch technology in terms of revenue.
Touch technology will drive the closure of gap between tablets and notebooks, what with the operating systems natively supporting touch as HID class. Text input will still be not as great as regular keyboards though. 2011 will be the year we will get to know how far (application coverage) touch can go.
Tablet device will become one of the developing products in 2011. In addition, there will be abundance supply of new models of smartphone. With all these products' flooding the market, the growth of touch panel is not a surprise. More players join; competition drives the price down. It seems like a $50.00 smartphone is an achievable goal, isn't it?