Smartphones, tablets give GaAs device market some gas

GaAs device revenues to reach $6.1 billion in 2017--up from $5.3 billion in 2012--predicts Strategy Analytics
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Smartphones and tablets are expected to fuel growth in 'gallium arsenide device' revenues over the next couple of years, with GaAs device revenues to reach $6.1 billion in 2017--up from $5.3 billion in 2012--according to the latest stats from Strategy Analytics.

The research firm forecasts above average growth for the GaAs device market in the next two years, followed by slowing cellular demand that will drag the growth rate below historical averages.

"The GaAs market closed 2012 with strong growth, and we have seen a continuation of that trend so far in 2013. We anticipate 2013 and 2014 will see growth above historical averages as demand for cellular applications, particularly power amplifiers, picks up. Unfortunately, we believe this will be short-lived as competitive technologies and new architectures combine to capture market share and slow the growth of GaAs devices," predicted Eric Higham, director of Strategy Analytics' GaAs and compound semiconductor technologies service.

GaAs devices are also used in small cells, enabling mobile operators to transmit more data using less power.

"As wireless data consumption continues to skyrocket, operators and network equipment manufacturers are responding by shrinking cell sizes to boost data rates and capacity for users. As a consequence, we expect growth of large macro cells used in traditional network architecture to peak [in 2013] and then slowly decline. Offsetting this decline will be explosive growth in base stations with lower transmit power that we expect will begin around 2014," Higham noted in a previous Strategy Analytics release.

In addition, silicon-based technologies such as complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS) and the use of multi-band power amplifiers will put a damper on the growth of GaAs device revenue, predicted Asif Answar, director of the strategic technologies practice at Strategy Analytics.

For more:
- check out the Strategy Analytics release

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