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Published on : Aug 20, 2014

The microcontrollers industry may well be on the verge of a full-blown recovery thanks to a rebound in sales to automotive and industrial customers. Analysts say that this recovery isn’t limited to the 32-bit market. Signs of growth are also being seen in the 8-bit industry, with a higher inflow of new orders. 

The growth has been so encouraging that Arizona-based Microchip Technology Inc. has even recently ramped up its manufacturing capacity. According to Microchip COO Ganesh Moorthy, the company’s 8-bit microcontroller products have witnessed tremendous demand over the past three years. Moorthy says that demand has outstripped their production volume capabilities. 

Market analysts observe that this growth was endemic across a major part of the MCU industry during the second quarter of the calendar year. This trend is expected to continue over the next few years.

A mid-year market update in the McClean Report estimates a 6% growth in the sales of microcontrollers in 2014, hitting US$16.1 billion. This will mark a new high in microcontroller sales. Sales in 2015 and 2016 are likely to grow by 7% and 9% respectively. The report also projects that shipments will see a 12% spike in 2014, touching about 18.1 billion units. These growth figures were also the reason the report firm raised its forecast for the microcontrollers industry by 3%.

According to Ritesh Tyagi, Renesas’ VP of marketing, the outlook of the market remains positive, and the demand creation activity seems is witnessing an increase. Renesas is a leading supplier of MCUs, and is based in California.