Analog chip sales feel ASP pressure
This is different to the 2013 landscape for digital chips according to the firm, which sees a modest 4 percent annual unit growth accompanied by 2 percent move up in ASPs will result in 6 percent annual growth in the digital market.
The analog market was characterized by a strong sequential upturn in unit shipments in 2Q13 that IC Insights attributes to inventory rebuilding and growth in the market for mobile devices. There is a strong requirement for power management and multiple mixed-signal devices in this equipment. Historically, sales and unit shipments of ICs slow down in the fourth quarter of the year as the buildup to the holiday buying season ends but IC Insights forecasts that in 2013 analog unit shipments will exceed 100-billion ICs for the first time in history.
Analog and digital IC market forecast for 2012 and 2013. Source: IC Insights.
In addition to increased competition in the analog and mixed-signal markets, due to some IDMs moving away from digital to focus on analog, IC Insights reckons the downward ASPs for analog result from moves of analog production on to 200mm diameter wafers and in some cases on to 300mm diameter wafers. This has helped cut manufacturing costs per die and allowed companies to cut prices.
Power management ICs were among the strong growth items in the first half of 2013. In the application-specific segment, strong unit growth for communications and industrial analog devices offset significant declines in consumer and computer analog shipments in the first half of the year.
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