PARIS – The IC industry is headed for a dramatic restructuring, and medical electronics will be one of the key drivers for the chip makers over the next five years, according to market researcher IC Insights Inc.
The supply base is increasingly controlled by a few very large companies, momentum continues for the fabless/fablite business model, and the ratio of capital spending as a percent of IC sales is dropping, said Brian Matas, vice president, Market Research, at IC Insights, at the Sitelesc’s European Microelectronics Summit here this week.
Matas said demand for ICs continues to be robust in all phases of life-medical, auto computer and telecom. And, these two trends are building the foundations for a more stable IC market and better growth rates over the next five years.
The world population is aging, and this represents a unique opportunity for the medical electronics industry.
The world population reaches 7.05 billion in 2012, with 1 in 9 people being over 60 years old (11 percent), according to the United Nations. In 2020, the world population is expected to amount to 7.7 billion in 2020, with 1 in 7 people over 60 years old (14 percent).
Today, 30 percent of the Japanese are over 60 years old. This will be true for 64 countries in 2050, Matas noted.
In the United States, Matas illustrated, the health-care system is spending at an unsustainable rate. And, a recent study by consulting company Deloitte found that, once changes are enforced in the health-care system via the Affordable Care Act, 9 percent of U.S. employers will drop offering healthcare coverage for their workers in the following one-to-three years.
“Unsustainable is the word that best describes the health-care system today. Something needs to take place,” noted Matas.
He said remote diagnosis represents a major opportunity for ICs in healthcare but the biggest opportunity will come from consumers who self-monitor their health.
IC Insights said it expects the industrial/medical IC market will amount to $15.2 billion in 2012. “For now, we provide nice forecasts for the medical IC market for the next ten years with a strong growth in RFID and sensors. By region, Asia-Pacific is the largest region of medical IC adoption,” concluded Matas.
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