Printed and potentially printed electronics could reach $9.4 Billion in 2012

March 08, 2012 // By Raghu Das, CEO, IDTechEx
Printed and potentially printed electronics could reach $9.4 Billion in 2012
IDTechEx find that the market for printed and potentially printed electronics in 2012 will be $9.4 Billion. This includes devices not yet printed today but which are moving towards being printed. Of this market, 30% of the devices studied are made predominately by printing, and 6% are on a non-rigid substrate.

There are four main markets that make up 98% of this figure, which are:

OLED displays, driven by the need to differentiate smart phones. Samsung has led much of the investment, production and use of OLED displays in its smart phones, seeing significant sales over the past 12 months. These OLED displays are not printed and are not flexible in the main. Continued demand in 2012, along with OLED displays of similar sizes being adopted by others, will see a $4 Billion spend on OLED displays (display module value) in 2012.

In 2012 $290 million will be spent on e-paper material (excluding the value of the TFT backplane). In e-readers, this technology has created a market of several billion dollars if we include the value of the e-readers and content. However, the Holy Grail is colour, with electrophoretic versions and other technologies (such as electrowetting) being pursued.

Conductive inks, used predominately for photovoltaic (PV) bus bars and other applications such as antennas, flexible connectors, smart packaging etc, see a $2.3 Billion spend on the ink alone. This excludes spend on conductive ink for shielding/static discharge applications and membrane circuits, where the sectors are mature. Almost all of this is flake-based ink.

In addition, almost $2.6 Billion will be spent on CIGs based photovoltaics in 2012 - but almost all of this is non-printed and on glass. However we include this as part of the big picture because there is significant effort pursuing printing to manufacture CIGs.

The full breakdown is shown in the figure below:

Printed and Potentially Printed Electronics Market Size by Component Type in 2012. Source: Printed, Organic & Flexible Electronics Forecasts, Players & Opportunities 2012-2022 -


IDTechEx believe the OLED display market will rise to $30 Billion in 2022, and of that 20% will be predominately printed and 17% on a non-rigid substrate. Indeed, significant research and investment to printed OLEDs is happening now, and

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