Friday, May 29, 2015

Real-Time Location System (RTLS) Market Worth $3,923.6 Million by 2020

According to a new market research report “Real-Time Location System (RTLS) Market Product, Technology, Application and Geography – Forecasts & Analysis to 2020“, the global RTLS Market was valued at $720.5 Million in 2014 and is expected to reach $3,923.6 Million by 2020, at an estimated CAGR of 33.03% between 2015 and 2020. The healthcare sector constituted the largest application for the RTLS Market in 2014 and is expected to continue to grow at a significant rate because of increasing applications in the healthcare segment, especially the old age care segment. Industrial manufacturing, government and defense, process industries, and transportation and logistics sectors are the next major applications of RTLS solutions and are expected to grow at a considerable rate due to the increasing adoption of RTLS solutions in the same.

The RTLS Market players have been focusing on the innovations in terms of technological advancements to cater to the specific needs of enterprises in tracking and monitoring the precise location of assets or personnel. UWB and ZigBee based RTLS technologies have been the emerging technologies in the RTLS Market, which provide high accuracy and precise location of objects in shorter locations compared to any other RTLS technology. The market for these technologies is expected to grow at a higher CAGR in the forecast period than others because of the increasing adoption of the RTLS solutions based on these technologies. Furthermore, these technologies have been able to overcome the difficulties faced by the other technologies in tracking objects in harder mediums such as concrete wall or other substances. However, Wi-Fi and RFID technologies are expected to account for a major market share during the forecast period, due to their lesser cost compared to UWB and ZigBee technologies.

The Americas and Europe were the largest markets for the RTLS technology in 2014. Asia-Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing region, followed by RoW which is also among the major regions that plays a significant role in the growth of the RTLS market. The growth of the RTLS Market in the Americas was largely driven by the U.S., which accounted for 74.7% of the total Americas RTLS Market in 2014. The Asia-Pacific market for RTLS is expected to be driven by its key markets such as Japan, Australia, China,Malaysia, and Singapore. The industrial manufacturing and retail sector along with, transportation and logistics is likely to provide a huge growth opportunity for RTLS solutions in these regions. The market would also be fuelled by the increase in focus of the major global RTLS vendors to expand their product and service offerings in the Asia-Pacific region as this region is expected to witness a higher growth in terms of the adoption of RTLS solutions and market value.

The report describes market dynamics that include the key drivers, restraints, challenges, and opportunities with respect to the RTLS Market and forecasts the market till 2020. This global report provides a detailed view of the RTLS market across products, technologies, applications, and geographies. The report also profiles the prominent players in the RTLS market along with their key growth strategies. The competitive landscape of the market analyses a large number of players with their market share. The RTLS Market is witnessing numerous collaborations and partnerships across the value chain, to cater to various industries in different geographies.

The major companies in the global RTLS Market that have been included in this report are Zebra Technologies Corporation (U.S.), AeroScout, Inc. (U.S.), Savi Technology, Inc. (U.S.), TeleTracking Technologies, Inc. (U.S.), Ubisense Group Plc (U.K.), Ekahau, Inc. (U.S.), Identec Group AG (Liechtenstein), CenTrak, Inc. (U.S.), Awarepoint Corporation (U.S.), and Versus Technology, Inc. (U.S.), and others.

Details of the new RTLS market report, table of contents and ordering information can be found  on Publications’ web site. View the report:  Real-Time Location System (RTLS) Market Product, Technology, Application and Geography – Forecasts & Analysis to 2020.


Real-Time Location System (RTLS) Market Worth $3,923.6 Million by 2020

Mobile Sensing Wearables Market to Reach $47 Billion in 2018

ELECTRONICS.CA PUBLICATIONS announces the availability of a new report entitled “Mobile Sensing Wearables – Market Dynamics Report”.  Annual revenues for mobile sensing wearables – fashionable devices that perform sensing and location functions—will be $47 billion in 2018 driven by widespread adoption of advanced mobile sensing smart watches. Wearable sensors enabled by low power wireless components, mobile apps, cloud computing and a receptive fashion industry has created a technology tsunami for developers and investors.

“Over the past two years, wearables have gone from a niche market to a revolutionary force,” says Mareca Hatler, ON World’s research director. “Developers from all major industries are seeing opportunities for sensor enabled wearables, integrated cloud applications and services as well as the next fashion trend.”

Over the next five years, 700 million wearable tech devices will be shipped for a global annual market worth $47.4 billion at this time. Hardware will make up the majority of the revenues during this period but mobile apps and subscriptions will grow faster. The wearables industry will rapidly create new fashion lines and this is where manufacturers will break new ground.

With over 400 unique products, the mobile sensing wearables market tripled in 2013 over the previous year and continues to accelerate with the emergence of new product categories such as smart watches, smart glasses, consumer wearable sensors as well as growing industrial and enterprise solutions. Out of the 70,000 product reviews that ON World evaluated, 60% were completed in 2013 and the first quarter of 2014. Some categories such as smart watches have increased by a factor of ten and personal sensors increased by over 500 percent.

ON World has identified over 50 smart watch vendors including sports watches, luxury watches and offerings for children such as the HereO GPS watch. By contrast, there are only about a dozen smart glasses developers but they are on track to become a $5 billion market by 2017. A few other emerging mobile sensing wearable product categories include bracelets (e.g., Cuff and Netatmo), baby vital sign monitors (e.g., Rest Devices, Owlet and Enmovere) and pet activity/location trackers (e.g., Tagg, Voyce and Whistle). Investment in wearables hardware companies is accelerating with almost $500 million invested in 2013 alone.

Sensor fusion and cloud based software and services has become the next “killer” platform. Nest’s recently launched developer program is already showing the potential for integrating wearables with smart home systems such as Jawbone’s UP fitness tracker with Nest’s smart thermostats.

Mobile Sensing Wearables MarkeDetails of the new report, table of contents and ordering information can be found on Publications’ web site.  View the report:  Mobile Sensing Wearables – Market Dynamics Report.

Mobile Sensing Wearables Market to Reach $47 Billion in 2018

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

IPC/WHMA-A-620B PDF Download - Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies

IPC/WHMA-A-620 is a collection of visual Quality Acceptability Requirements for Cable, Wire and Harness Assemblies.  IPC/WHMA-A-620 can be used as a stand-alone document for purchasing products, however it does not specify frequency of in-process inspection or frequency of end product inspection. No limit is placed on the number of process indicators or the number of allowable repair/rework of defects. Such information should be developed with a statistical process control plan (see IPC-9191).

This publication describes acceptability criteria for producing crimped, mechanically secured, or soldered interconnections and the associated lacing/restraining criteria associated with cable and harness assemblies. It is not the intent of this document to exclude any acceptable procedure used to make the electrical connection; however, the methods used must produce completed assemblies that conform to the acceptability requirements described in this document.

Significant technical updates, greater ease-of-use and compatibility with other key assembly standards are among the many changes users will find in the newly released B revision of IPC/WHMA-A-620, Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies. This important industry standard is a joint effort of IPC and the Wire Harness Manufacturers’ Association (WHMA).

The revision addresses more than 500 documented comments and recommendations from users throughout the industry and features 125 new or changed illustrations.

Some of the most extensive changes appear in the molding and potting section, which has been expanded for increased coverage of Class 2 and 3 requirements, including 31 new illustrations. The document also provides new criteria for wires as small as 32 AWG, and has a section on requirements flow down, which requires companies to have their subcontractors use the standard to ensure all hardware is manufactured to the same guidelines.

IPC WHMA A-620B PDF Download

IPC WHMA A-620B PDF Download

IPC/WHMA-A-620B is 400 pages long and features 682 full-color illustrations.  IPC/WHMA-A-620 B is the latest revision of IPC A620,

Purchase and download IPC/WHMA-A-620B standard from Publications. IPC standards are also available on CD-ROM.

Also Avaliable in Spanish, Chinese, German, Danish, Polish, and French Versions.


IPC/WHMA-A-620B PDF Download - Requirements and Acceptance for Cable and Wire Harness Assemblies

Wi-Fi Semiconductor Chipset Analysis - Wi-Fi Ascending ­ Now More Than Ever

ELECTRONICS.CA PUBLICATIONS announces the availability of a new report entitled “Supplier BullsEye Analysis 802.11ac WiFi Chipsets”.  According to the oft-cited Cisco Visual Networking Index, by 2018, Wi-Fi becomes the most important air interface (and possibly the most important broadband wireless communications interface bar none).

Exhibit 1: Global IP Traffic by Local Access Technology

Wi-Fi Semiconductor Chipset Analysis

2×2 MIMO 802.11ac is now a standard feature in new smartphones, phablets, tablets and notebook computers. We believe that in 1H15 2015, new iOS and Android radio firmware will turn on Multi User MIMO (MU-MIMO) functionality in smartphones, potentially quadrupling Wi-Fi throughput as 11ac Wave 2 Access Points are deployed.

At the International CES 2015 event in early January 2015, all eight of the semiconductor suppliers analyzed in this report made announcements regarding their IEEE 802.1ac product portfolios. The battle for new design wins and subsequent market share had shifted and become significantly more complex.

Qualcomm and Broadcom are in a horse race now for Wave 2 consumer gateway and enterprise access point design wins. Broadcom has strong Wave 1 design win momentum, while Qualcomm has a product maturity advantage.

Marvell has a strong new Wave 2 chipset offering, a deep Ethernet packet processing experience, but few existing 11ac design wins. We believe Marvell is the dark horse in the 2015 race for Wave 2 chipset market share.

Quantenna has the most market experience with Wave 2 802.11ac radios. As evidence of their technical prowess, they demonstrated an 8×8:8 “Wave 3″ (EJL Wireless Research designation) solution at CES 2015. We believe the company is an attractive acquisition for a strong embedded processing semiconductor company.

For a small venture-backed company, Celeno has an impressive set of design wins. An acquisition by their set top box design partner Intel would enable Intel to increase their “share of wallet” in consumer cable modem WLAN gateway systems.

MediaTek has stepped up with a Wave 2 radio and powerful Wi-Fi networking SoC, and while late to the game, they offer a complete smartphone chipset portfolio, providing client side leverage for their Wi-Fi access point chipset solution.

Intel has taken an early market lead with IEEE 802.11ad WiGig. The question remains whether they will see consumer interest and PC OEM uptake of this new short range 60 GHz air interface in 2015.

Realtek faces a serious threat from Broadcom’s new single chip 2×2 11ac product family. 2015 will be a critical year for Realtek’s future in Wi-Fi silicon.

This research report is intended as a companion to another Wi-Fi Semiconductor Chipset Analysis “Wi-Fi Blasts Ahead with 11ac Wave 2 Chipsets“, published in December 2014.

This research report analyzes eight 802.11ac Wi-Fi equipment chipset suppliers (three radio only and five radio plus Wi-Fi networking processor SoC) using objective commercial and technical performance fitness evaluation criteria. Alphabetically, these suppliers are:

  • Broadcom Corp

  • Celeno Communications (radio only)

  • Intel Corp (radio only)

  • Marvell Technology Group

  • MediaTek, Inc.

  • Qualcomm Technology, Inc.

  • Quantenna Communications, Inc. (radio only)

  • Realtek Semiconductor Corp

This research report does not cover products from Airoha, Intersil or Lantiq, as none of these companies offers 802.11ac radios or companion networking processors SoCs. Redpine Signals was removed from this report, as the company has no known 802.11ac equipment design wins. EVALUATION CRITERIA RATIONALIZATION Criterion 1 ­ Complete 802.11ac Wave 1 or Wave 2 Chipset (Radio plus Wi-Fi Networking Processor SoC).

With a very small number of exceptions, enterprise and carrier Wi-Fi access point OEMs (and their ODM partners typically in Taiwan) are unwilling to mix radios and networking processor SoC in their system designs. There are numerous compelling reasons for this industry dynamic. First, complete “homogeneous” (single supplier) chipset suppliers optimize system performance for their own radio and networking SoC (plus one or two third-party RF front end designs), and these suppliers are generally unwilling to optimize system performance for system designs that include competitor silicon and software (this optimization process generally requires release of proprietary firmware or software source code, for example). This means the equipment OEM must optimize a “mixed supplier” chipset themselves. To make matters worse, the chip suppliers will typically hold back on application engineering support to customers attempting to integrate and optimize a “heterogeneous” (multiple supplier) chipset, both because of ambiguous technical accountability, and to apply business leverage on the equipment OEM to abandon the heterogeneous design, and adopt the supplier’s complete homogeneous chipset. Additionally, the semiconductor suppliers will typically provide more attractive pricing for a complete chipset design win than for discrete radio or networking SoC chips.

The R&D and sustaining engineering support resources required by the equipment OEM to integrate and optimize a heterogeneous chipset are much higher than using a complete reference design from a single supplier. Clearly there would have to be a major technical benefit (much higher performance, much lower power, much smaller form factor) to a heterogeneous chipset to justify the higher marginal manufacturing cost and the much higher development and support costs. There is little or no compelling evidence of any “breakthrough level” technical benefit in the publically available test results published by access point equipment OEMs using heterogeneous chipsets.

The particular criterion is “binary”: complete radio plus Wi-Fi networking processor SoC suppliers receive four points; and radio only suppliers receive one point. There are no intermediate point scores between one and four. One point is awarded to radio only suppliers because in all cases they have reference design relationships with Wi-Fi networking processor SoC suppliers such as Lantiq, Freescale and Intel.

Due to this industry dynamic, suppliers who can offer complete 802.11ac chipsets (radio plus networking SoC) have an overwhelming commercial advantage over those suppliers who offer discrete radios or discrete networking processor SoCs, and thus this criterion is ranked #1 in the EJL Wireless Research Wi-Fi Chipset Supplier BullsEye Analysis.

Details of the new report, table of contents and ordering information can be found on Publications’ web site. View the report: Supplier BullsEye Analysis 802.11ac WiFi Chipsets.


Wi-Fi Semiconductor Chipset Analysis - Wi-Fi Ascending ­ Now More Than Ever

Monday, May 25, 2015

Radio Chip for the “Internet of things”

Circuit that reduces power leakage when transmitters are idle could greatly extend battery life

At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the big theme was the “Internet of things” — the idea that everything in the human environment, from kitchen appliances to industrial equipment, could be equipped with sensors and processors that can exchange data, helping with maintenance and the coordination of tasks.

Realizing that vision, however, requires transmitters that are powerful enough to broadcast to devices dozens of yards away but energy-efficient enough to last for months — or even to harvest energy from heat or mechanical vibrations.

“A key challenge is designing these circuits with extremely low standby power, because most of these devices are just sitting idling, waiting for some event to trigger a communication,” explains Anantha Chandrakasan, the Joseph F. and Nancy P. Keithley Professor in Electrical Engineering at MIT. “When it’s on, you want to be as efficient as possible, and when it’s off, you want to really cut off the off-state power, the leakage power.”

This week, at the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ International Solid-State Circuits Conference, Chandrakasan’s group will present a new transmitter design that reduces off-state leakage 100-fold. At the same time, it provides adequate power for Bluetooth transmission, or for the even longer-range 802.15.4 wireless-communication protocol.

“The trick is that we borrow techniques that we use to reduce the leakage power in digital circuits,” Chandrakasan explains. The basic element of a digital circuit is a transistor, in which two electrical leads are connected by a semiconducting material, such as silicon. In their native states, semiconductors are not particularly good conductors. But in a transistor, the semiconductor has a second wire sitting on top of it, which runs perpendicularly to the electrical leads. Sending a positive charge through this wire — known as the gate — draws electrons toward it. The concentration of electrons creates a bridge that current can cross between the leads.

But while semiconductors are not naturally very good conductors, neither are they perfect insulators. Even when no charge is applied to the gate, some current still leaks across the transistor. It’s not much, but over time, it can make a big difference in the battery life of a device that spends most of its time sitting idle.

Going negative

Chandrakasan — along with Arun Paidimarri, an MIT graduate student in electrical engineering and computer science and first author on the paper, and Nathan Ickes, a research scientist in Chandrakasan’s lab — reduces the leakage by applying a negative charge to the gate when the transmitter is idle. That drives electrons away from the electrical leads, making the semiconductor a much better insulator.

Of course, that strategy works only if generating the negative charge consumes less energy than the circuit would otherwise lose to leakage. In tests conducted on a prototype chip fabricated through the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company’s research program, the MIT researchers found that their circuit spent only 20 picowatts of power to save 10,000 picowatts in leakage.

To generate the negative charge efficiently, the MIT researchers use a circuit known as a charge pump, which is a small network of capacitors — electronic components that can store charge — and switches. When the charge pump is exposed to the voltage that drives the chip, charge builds up in one of the capacitors. Throwing one of the switches connects the positive end of the capacitor to the ground, causing a current to flow out the other end. This process is repeated over and over. The only real power drain comes from throwing the switch, which happens about 15 times a second.

Turned on

To make the transmitter more efficient when it’s active, the researchers adopted techniques that have long been a feature of work in Chandrakasan’s group. Ordinarily, the frequency at which a transmitter can broadcast is a function of its voltage. But the MIT researchers decomposed the problem of generating an electromagnetic signal into discrete steps, only some of which require higher voltages. For those steps, the circuit uses capacitors and inductors to increase voltage locally. That keeps the overall voltage of the circuit down, while still enabling high-frequency transmissions.

What those efficiencies mean for battery life depends on how frequently the transmitter is operational. But if it can get away with broadcasting only every hour or so, the researchers’ circuit can reduce power consumption 100-fold.

This research was funded by Shell and Texas Instruments.


Written by Larry Hardesty, MIT News Office

Related links

Wireless Charging Technology: Receiver and Transmitter ICs Worldwide Forecasts

Radio Chip for the “Internet of things”

Digital Power Management ICs Market Report

ELECTRONICS.CA PUBLICATIONS announces the release of a comprehensive global report on Digital Power Management ICs markets.  Global market for Digital Power Management ICs is forecast to reach US$4.5 billion by 2020, driven by rising use of digital power solutions across various power system designs. Digital power management ICs (DPMIC) are capable of performing several functions including power management, power conversion, and communication by using a digital feedback loop.

Power management is carried out within and on-board the converter. Select on-board functions performed by digital power management ICs include power system configuration, voltage sequencing, and fault monitoring. Functions within power converter include digital implementation of PWM (pulse width modulator) for controlling energy flow for each cycle. DPMIC’s significant advantages over their analog counterparts in terms of level of performance and efficiency in adapting, controlling and rectifying power current are helping drive the market’s strong evolution.

Demand for digital power management IC’s is intrinsically linked to the level of semiconductor device manufacturing activity, which in turn is largely influenced by the health of the electronic devices manufacturing sector. The market as a result remains vulnerable to fast-changing technology, short product life cycles, and rapid obsolescence of semiconductor devices. Periods of economic slowdown such as the 2007-2009 economic recession slowed down demand for electronic devices, which in turn impacted market prospects for semiconductor devices and digital power management IC’s. The market however made a strong rebound in the year 2010 and current growth is driven by increasing demand for and production of electronic devices.

The market is also expected to be driven by robust growth in numerous application areas such as computer networks, telecommunications and data communications all of which require management of multiple voltage rails and high power. Technology developments aimed at enhancing cost-effectiveness and product performance will benefit market prospects in the coming years. Auto tuning and auto compensation are significant developments in digital control technology. Load shedding, dimming and developing lighting automation are all likely to propel the implementation of digital control methods in ballast technology. New digital product architectures and designs are likely to be developed that emphasize on more accurate current and voltage regulation. Growing acceptance in the mainstream desktop, graphic and server markets is also expected to push adoption.

As stated by the new market research report on Digital Power Management ICs, Asia-Pacific represents the largest market worldwide. The region also represents the fastest growing market with a CAGR of 34.1% over the analysis period. Large population base, rising levels of disposable income, rapidly growing semiconductor manufacturing industry and favorable government initiatives have established Asia as the world’s largest supplier as well as consumer of electronic products. China is a major contributor to the consumption as well as supply of power management ICs supported by low production costs, rising levels of literacy, and presence of efficient infrastructure facilities.

Key players covered in the report include Analog Devices Inc., Ericsson Power Modules AB, Exar Corporation, Fairchild Semiconductor Inc., Freescale Semiconductor Inc., Infineon Technologies AG, International Rectifier Corporation, Intersil Corporation, Linear Technology Corporation, Maxim Integrated Products Inc., Micrel Inc., Microchip Technology Inc., Power-One Inc., Silicon Laboratories Inc., Skyworks Solutions Inc., Qualcomm Incorporated, and Texas Instruments Incorporated, among others.

The research report titled “Digital Power Management ICs – Global Strategic Business Report”, provides a comprehensive review of market trends, growth drivers, technological trends, major challenges, mergers, acquisitions and other strategic industry activities of major companies worldwide. The report provides market estimates and projections for major geographic markets including the US, Canada, Japan, Europe (France, Germany, Italy, the UK, Spain, Russia, and Rest of Europe), Asia-Pacific (China, South Korea, Taiwan, and Rest of Asia-Pacific) and Rest of World. Key end-use markets analyzed in the report include Electronics; Data Communications, Computer Networks & Telecommunications; and Other Application Types.

Digital Power Management ICs Market Report

Details of the new report, table of contents and ordering information can be found on Publications’ web site.  View the reportDigital Power Management ICs – Global Strategic Business Report.


Digital Power Management ICs Market Report

Friday, May 22, 2015

IPC Working Group Focuses on Nuances of Conformal Coating

As products get smaller and denser, factors that used to be fairly easy to deal with can become areas of concern. Conformal coatings are getting increased interest now as usage grows and the quality of coatings comes under more scrutiny.

These coatings have typically been applied and examined using a range of related standards. For example, IPC-CC-830 addresses some basic testing of materials properties, while IPC J-STD-001 and IPC-A-610 define how a cured film should look.

A new IPC working group, 5-33awg, Conformal Coating Requirements Working Group, was formed to leverage the considerable amount of coating experience of the 5-33c IPC Conformal Coating Handbook Task Group, and focus on areas not covered by existing specifications. Among their areas of interest are the differences in the ways that an aerospace OEM might test coatings for NASA for outer space, or for the FAA’s tests on humidity condensation. Testing automotive OEM coatings in a damp heat environment is another area being examined.

5-33awg is working to develop criteria for conformal coating application and evaluation. Its goal is to come up with methods that allow a user of conformal coating to determine how conformal coating performs in particular end-use environments.

Learn more about conformal coatings market and  IPC Standards that provide informed perspective and relevant analysis of emergent technologies.



IPC Working Group Focuses on Nuances of Conformal Coating