Audio control energizing microphone, speaker markets

June 08, 2017 // By Peter Clarke
Microphones, microspeakers, and audio ICs have become the focus of a newly energized audio ecosystem being targeted by consumer giants such as Apple, Amazon and Google for equipment control.

As a result, the market for MEMS microphones and Electret Condenser Microphones (ECMs), microspeakers and audio ICs, worth more than $15 billion in 2016, is set to enjoy a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6 percent through 2022, according to Yole Developpement. And that growth will take the market to an annual value of $20 billion, according to Yole, but could prove to be a conservative estimate.

"From mobile phones to cars, from home assistants to drones, audio products like microphones, speakers and audio ICs are essential for all the new systems driving consumer electronic markets," said Guillaume Girardin, a MEMS and sensors analyst at Yole.


Microphone market 2005 to 2022 in millions of units. Source: Yole. For larger version click here

In 2016 the MEMS microphone and ECM market was worth $993 million and $700 million, respectively. The microspeaker market is estimated to have been worth $8.7 billion. The audio IC market, which includes codecs, DSPs and amplifiers and complements these transducers, was worth $4.3 billion in 2016.

The MEMS microphone market in 2017 will be more than 5 billion units shipped with a market value over $1 billion, Yole forecasts. The market leaders include Knowles, Goertek, AAC as well as startup Vesper Technologies, Yole reckons. Vesper Technologies developed the first commercial piezoelectric MEMS technology microphone that could eclipse the capacitive MEMS technologies used to date.

However it is Knowles MEMS microphones that are embedded in the iPhone 7 Plus according to a tear down analysis from Yole's sister companies System Plus Consulting and  KnowMade.

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