Antennas for Systems and Devices: Technologies and Global Markets

Published - Jan 2010| Analyst - Shalini Ramamurthy| Code - IFT073A
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Report Highlights

  • Overall sales in global antenna market were $10.7 billion in 2008, which came down to $10 billion in 2009 due to global recession. This is projected to reach $13.3 billion in 2014 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.8%
  • BCC Research forecasts that the defense and surveillance applications sector will grow fastest resulting in an almost 5% rise in market share. This sector was worth $1.2 billion in 2009 and is expected to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13% to reach 2.1 billion by 2014.
  • Wireless communications have made antennas almost indispensable to sectors such as computing applications and residential/industrial/commercial premises and user devices. Wireless telecommunications infrastructure was worth nearly $1.9 billion in 2009 and should reach $2.2 billion by 2014, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.7%.

INTRODUCTION

Antennas may represent the most underrated components in telecommunications. While the focus of stakeholders is rightfully on improving transmission and reception faculties of their devices, they are less focused on the components that make this happen.

Antennas have a formidable collection of use cases. It is not a homogeneous market and is reflected in the multiplicity of application sectors, operating principles, materials used, and operating frequencies. A few commonalities can be observed among drivers, through the following:
  • Quest for high Q-factor (measure of antenna efficiency)
  • Lesser form factor
  • Lower interference
  • Low power consumption
  • Adaptability to multiple frequency bands 
This report tries to make sense of the exceptionally fragmented antenna market. Prima facie, it would not be wrong to assume that the antenna market should display a level of homogeneity found in the markets of other wireless communication components such as basebands, modems, and radio frequency (RF) front ends. Such an expectation is way off the mark. What dictates the dynamics of antenna markets is the end application. It is not uncommon to notice entire antenna supply chains built closely around the interest of end-application users, rather than being heavily focused on interactions with other value adders in the telecommunications domains.
For this reason, this report considers the end-application sector as the primary classification criterion. To render the maximum level of granularity to the study, the report has identified 10 end-application categories, which are further subdivided into antenna technologies, antenna materials, and geographical regions.
On the whole, BCC Research forecasts that the future of antennas will continue to be driven by that of its end applications. However, commonalities as mentioned above will lead to the adoption of smarter technologies in antenna synthesis and operations. The market is thus likely to witness antennas that are lighter, smaller, power efficient and, most importantly, intelligent.
STUDY GOALS AND OBJECTIVES 
This study has the following goals and objectives:
  • Forecasting the market size for antennas in terms of dollar sales and shipment volumes
  • Providing insight into the prospects of antennas in various end-user segments
  • Examining the appeal, benefits, limitations, and prospects for diverse antenna technologies
  • Analyzing the limitations of conventional metal centric antenna design and exploring alternative materials such as ceramic as well as identifying the prospects for niche materials such as polytetrafluoroethelene (PTFE) and electrified gas
  • Highlighting the regional dynamics that influence the antenna market scenario
  • Highlight the roles played by major stakeholders and players
  • Provide an overview of the activities of influential companies
  • Examine crucial innovation breakthroughs through a detailed patent analysis 
REASONS FOR DOING THE STUDY
 
Antennas form the cradle of wireless communications. They are indispensable components of any wireless device. The explosion in standards and technology on wireless personal area network (WPAN), wireless local area network (WLAN), and wireless wide area network (WWAN) has exerted enormous pressure of antennas. Antennas are now confronted with the challenge of often simultaneously catering to multiple communication methodologies spanning frequency bands or waveform methodologies. Clearly, the antenna is undergoing a metamorphosis in technology terms, making it important to translate the impact of this upheaval on the market size of antennas. It is important to chronicle these changes and highlight the competitive advantages of various technologies and materials in their quest to respond to these changes. More importantly, it is imperative to map the quantitative impact of individual technologies and materials on individual end-application sectors, with a regional outlook. Market research on the subject on antennas has been mostly end-application sector specific or individual technology specific, leading to a compelling requirement for presenting a consolidated, single view of the vastly diverse market, which is what this study seeks to achieve.
SCOPE OF THE REPORT 
The report presents the forecasts for antenna technologies and material markets for the years 2009 to 2014 on a volume and value basis. The study is an analysis of antenna applications in different sectors, their benefits, their limitations, and their prospects in qualitative and quantitative terms. 
The Summary presents a snapshot of the volume and value size of antennas. 
The section on the overview of antenna technologies, materials, and markets introduces the antenna with key concepts central to understanding its functioning. It then analyzes the different classification criteria: technologies (flat panel/medium range directive antennas, miniature without fractal, miniature fractal, medium gain directional antenna, high gain reflector, and smart antennas), materials (metal, ceramic, PTFE, and electrified gas) and geographical regions (Americas, Europe Middle East Africa [EMEA], and Asia Pacific [APAC]). In conclusion, it provides a snapshot of the end-user application sector classification. 
The section on sector-specific analysis breaks down the antenna market for each of the sectors (aviation, telematics, TV/radio infrastructure and user equipment, satellite communication infrastructure, mobile phones, wireless telecommunications infrastructure, computing applications, medical applications, defense and surveillance applications and residential/industrial/commercial premises and user devices) along antenna technologies, antenna materials, and geographical regions. The section will thus provide the reader with an in-depth view of the dynamics of individual sectors vis-à-vis antenna prospects. 
The section on stakeholder analysis and market overview identifies stakeholder groups, explains their value additions and business models, and lists the challenges facing each of these groups in addition to discussing the buyer supply interplay, role of regulation, and cyclicality in context of antennas. The section then mentions the activities of influential stakeholders. 
The section on patents analyzes innovative activities that affect the core of the antenna systems. Fittingly, patents are classified based on the end-user applications supported by them. They are also broken down based on timing, assignee countries, and assignee organizations 
INTENDED AUDIENCE
 
This study provides a granular analysis of the market for antenna technologies, materials, and end-application sectors: 
  • It identifies the major technologies and materials that play a role in antenna synthesis.
  • It defines major end-application categories for antenna systems.
  • It breaks down the dollar value and shipment volume antenna market along end-application sectors.
  • Each end-application sector is further broken down along antenna technology, antenna material, and geographical region.
The report will add value to the following industry players: 
  • Original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and contract manufacturers of antenna systems and components in identifying the size and regional distribution of the antenna market
  • OEMs of products that embed antennas in understanding the technology and material pricing trends for antennas in their sector
  • Service providers and network designers in knowing the prospects of specific antennas in their domain. 
METHODOLOGY 
BCC presents an analysis, across the global market for antennas for systems and devices, based on reported revenue dollars and units shipped. We also analyze data gathered from various research sources via the Internet, including published industry data, shipping reports of nonlisted companies, and 10-K reports. 
INFORMATION SOURCES
 
  • This study has gone into the basic workings of all leading antenna types to identify major technology and material groups.
  • It has then broken down the end-user market into distinct sectors.
  • The prospects for each technology and material for each of the end-user application sectors were identified based on the absolute size of electronic devices in that market, prospects for wireless communication in that market, and the contribution of antennas to the bill of materials in the wireless devices used in each sector.
  • Regional growth trends in relation to the strengths of respective sectors, technologies and materials are noted with reference to geographical regions.
  • Historical pricing trends and the impact of financial meltdown on these pricing trends are also studied. 
The following sources have been referred to:
  • Published industry data
  • Shipment reports of non-listed companies
  • 10-K reports 
AUTHOR CREDENTIALS
 
Shalini R. has extensive experience analyzing and evaluating advanced information technology, including networking, telecom, and optical networks. She holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree in Electronics and Telecommunications and a Master of Science degree in Telecommunications and Software Engineering.
BCC ONLINE SERVICES
 
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DISCLAIMER
 
The information developed in this report is intended to be as reliable as possible at the time of publication and of a professional nature. This information does not constitute managerial, legal, or accounting advice; nor should it serve as a corporate policy guide, laboratory manual, or an endorsement of any product, as much of the information is speculative in nature. The author assumes no responsibility for any loss or damage that might result from reliance on the reported information or its use.

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