Sensors market to keep growing in ’22 and ’23

Market news |
By Peter Clarke

The semiconductor sensors market will grow by 13 percent in 2022 and 4 percent in 2023 due high demand and increasing prices, according to IC Insights.

Supplies have been tight into the automotive, industrial, and embedded-control sectors. However, global macroeconomic conditions and inflation have slowed sensor unit demand in consumer electronics, personal computers, and mainstream smartphone segments since the start of summer. Although unit deliveries are flattening the increased prices are causing double-digit percentage revenue growth compared to last year in most sensor categories, the market analyst said.

Sensor unit shipments are forecast to grow just 1.0 percent in 2022, but will nudge up to a record-high 30.8 billion devices compared to 30.4 billion units in 2021.  

Total sensor sales are on course to grow 13 percent in 2022 to an all-time high of US$14.4 billion, up from US$12.7 billion last year, according to IC Insights. IC Insights expects the 2022 average selling price across all sensors will be 11 percent higher in 2022 than in 2021, representing the largest one-year price percentage increase in more than two decades.

Global sensors market forecast 2022 to 2026. Source IC Insights.

Sales in two major sensor categories are expected to finish this year with double-digit percentage increases: +15 percent for acceleration/yaw sensors; and +20 percent for magnetic-field sensors (including electronic compass chips often found in navigation applications). Meanwhile, sales of pressure sensing devices (including microphone chips) are forecast to only grow 5 percent in 2022 due to constraints in automotive production and a drop off in smartphone shipments.

The pressure sensor market will be worth US$4.8 billion this year with shipments rising 0.4 percent to 8.5 billion units.  Revenues in the acceleration/yaw category, which contain accelerometers and gyroscope designs for inertial sensing, are expected to reach US$5.5 billion in 2022 with unit shipments rising a little less than 0.5 percent to 7.1 billion this year. IC Insights expects magnetic-field sensor sales to hit $3.3 billion in 2022 with unit shipments growing 1 percent to 12.7 billion.

Nearly three quarters of semiconductor sensor sales are generated by products made with microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) technology. Sales of sensors containing MEMS technology are expected to grow 5 percent in 2022 to US$10.8 billion while shipments of these devices are projected to increase 7 percent to an all-time annual peak of 16.7 billion units in 2022.

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