This is because while electronic system market growth will be just 2 percent to take the market to $1.49 trillion the global semiconductor market is expected to surge by 15 percent in 2017 to $419.1 billion (see Chip market to top $400 billion in 2017, says Gartner ). IC Insights forecasts that the total semiconductor market will exceed $500 billion in 2021.
The growth in global unit shipments of cellphones (0 percent), automobiles (2 percent), and PCs (-2 percent) forecast to be weak in 2017 while the value of semiconductor content continues to increase. In 2017 this is expected to be primarily due to the surge in DRAM and NAND flash memory prices (see Higher memory prices to drive 2017 chip market growth ).
Semiconductor market growth can exceed the growth of the equipment market it serves forever, otherwise it would reach the impossibly high value of 100 percent. Once it reaches its ceiling the semiconductor market will be constrained to rise on average at the same rate of the equipment market, or about 4 percent per year.
IC Insights stated that in its opinion the "ceiling" is at least 30 percent but will not be reached until after 2021.
Related links and articles: