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Will IoT Drive the Next Semiconductor Revolution?

Will IoT Drive the Next Semiconductor Revolution?
by Daniel Nenni on 04-14-2014 at 9:00 pm

To further my quest to comprehend the latest trends in the semiconductor industry continues, I spent the morning with SEMI at the “The Silicon Valley Breakfast Forum: Internet of Things (IoT) – Driving the Microelectronics Revolution” seminar. I’m a big fan of the breakfast seminar concept. I’m up early anyway and it is nice to get out of my lazyboy command center at home and press the flesh in Silicon Valley. And did I mention the free breakfast? There is nothing like hot green tea, warm bagels, and fresh fruit to start your day, absolutely.



Internet of Things (IoT)-The network of physical objects that contains embedded technology to communicate and sense or interact with the objects’ internal state or the external environment.

By the way, if you or your company are interested in the IoT or the wearables market it would be a pleasure to meet you. I have spent a lot of time investigating this and am at the point where I can discuss it somewhat intelligently. My focus is design enablement but I’m open to discuss and strategize all aspects of IoT. Of course not everyone agrees with what I have been writing:

“Based on my research, there is no customer research or positive feedback on wearables. Quite the contrary, Samsung is taking a bath on these products. I don’t know what research you have that justifies your position that some will hit it big, unless you are just stating your personal opinion. The difference between you and me is that I actually know what the semiconductor companies are doing with their customers – not just reference designs, but real design activity. Significant design-ins for wearables just is not there.”
Bill Giovino

Famous last words…. meanwhile, back in the real world, Intel is offering $1.3 million in cash grants to winners of its “Make It Wearable” competition. This is a global contest to fuel innovation by giving individuals a platform to develop real-world applications using Intel processors of course. Go Intel!

Here are some of the interesting points from the SEMI IoT Forum made by: Karen Bartleson, President IEEE Standards Association and Senior Director of Community Marketing @ Synopsys – Alfonso Velosa, Research Director @ Gartner – Kerry McGuire Balanza, Vice President of Strategy @ ARM.

What is IoT?

  • Wearable Devices and the way they interact
  • Meters and machines and how they manage
  • Smart home/smart appliances and when we want them
  • Connected cars and how they are constructed
  • Smart cities and smart Governments

Semiconductor vendors will drive the IoT architecture by investing in design from devices to the cloud: MCUs, Embedded Flash + RF, Sensors, MEMS, low power, 2G/3G/4G, Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, NFC, Zigbee, Security, and proven process technologies (not leading edge).

Expect many types of things in a highly fragmented market.

By 2017, 50% of internet of things solutions will originate in start-ups less than three years old!

The IoT Opportunity is much larger: Analysts predictions for connected devices (2020): 30 billion? 50 billion? 75 billion?

Current trend shows strong growth. Not new, it’s been around for >20 years. Connected things > world population (6.8B).

IoT scale and diversity is very different from mobile. The number of Internet-connected devices projected to be in the home of the average family of four (with two teenage children) in 2020 = 50 — up from an average of about 10 connected devices in 2012.

Recommended Reading:

• TSPs Must Invest in the Rapidly Evolving IoT Ecosystems Now
https://www.gartner.com/doc/2694117

• Competitive Landscape: Semiconductor Companies Prepare to
Battle for Supremacy in the Internet of Things
https://www.gartner.com/doc/2649018

• Definition: Operational Technology Security
http://www.gartner.com/document/2589921

• The Internet of Things Will Shape Smart Cities
http://www.gartner.com/id=2395415

• Uncover Value From the Internet of Things With the Four
Fundamental Usage Scenarios
https://www.gartner.com/doc/2485815

• Hype Cycle for the Internet of Things, 2013
http://www.gartner.com/id=2571716

• Hype Cycle for Operational Technology, 2013
http://www.gartner.com/id=2568622

Thank you again SEMI for the breakfast and opportunity to learn more about the future of the semiconductor industry!

SEMI is the global industry association serving the nano- and micro-electronic manufacturing supply chains. Our 1,900 member companies are the engine of the future, enabling smarter, faster and more economical products that improve our lives. Since 1970, SEMI has been committed to helping members grow more profitably, create new markets and meet common industry challenges. SEMI maintains offices in Bangalore, Beijing, Berlin, Brussels, Grenoble, Hsinchu, Moscow, San Jose, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Tokyo, and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.semi.org.

More Articles by Daniel Nenni…..

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