What would you do if you had $857.2 million dollars? While some beachfront property in the Caribbean would probably look pretty good to you, the electronics industry took that money and spent it on industrial temperature controllers last year. It's a booming market, actually, and it's going to get bigger.
A recent study by Venture Development Corp. of Natick, Mass., says that the overall market for industrial electronic temperature controllers will annually increase by 4.4%, totaling $1.02 billion by 2004. This market can be segmented into three categories: microprocessor-based single-loop controllers, microprocessor-based multiple-loop controllers, and analog-based controllers.
The single-loop sector will leap from 2000's $688.5 million tally to $830 million in 2004. That's a 4.8% compound annual growth rate. While the multiple models represent a smaller slice of the industry, they will enjoy some faster growth. The worldwide multiple-loop market will increase at a 5.7% annual pace, going from $111.7 million in 2000 to over $139 million in 2004. But the news isn't so good for the analog sector. Its $57 million 2000 tally will drop by 3.5% each year to hit $49.5 million in 2004. Too many designers are shifting to the microprocessor-based models for analog to keep up.
Prices for microprocessor-based controllers are dropping. Manufacturers are hoping to sustain these prices by adding a number of features and functions. Many devices now boast communication bus/network interfaces, additional software, dot-matrix displays, and specialized control features. Yet these changes probably won't be enough to keep prices high. Efficient manufacturing, lower component costs, larger shares of standard products over custom models, and new competitors entering the market will all provoke some kind of price reduction. Sharper price declines, then, are expected through 2004.
Fore details, contact VDC at (508) 653-9000, or go to www.vdc-corp.com.