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Wave Of Megamergers Preps Semiconductor Makers For IoT
November 20, 2015, 12:46:00 PM EDT By Investor's Business Daily
Semiconductor sales growth is slowing. Interest rates are low. Big semiconductor firms are sitting on piles of cash. Combined, those ingredients have been the perfect recipe for chip industry consolidation.
"This year, there will be $120 billion spent on merging and acquiring in the semiconductor industry. That's the highest number we've ever seen," Jim Feldhan, senior analyst at Semico Research said in an IBD interview.
Auto, lighting and consumer device chipmakerNXP Semiconductors (NXPI) in March announced it would buy rivalFreescale Semiconductor (FSL) in a deal valuing Freescale at $16.7 billion, including debt. The combined company would have a $10-billion-a-year run rate and would be the No. 1 auto chip supplier and third-largest global chipmaker behindIntel (INTC) and No. 2 Samsung.
On June 2, microprocessor king Intel announced a deal to buy programmable chipmakerAltera (ALTR) for $17 billion. The week before,Apple (AAPL) chip supplierAvago Technologies (AVGO) announced a deal to buy broadband services chipmakerBroadcom (BRCM) for $37 billion.
After that surge of action, are any deals left on the shelf?
Industry veteran George Scalise, former head of the Semiconductor Industry Association trade group, said as long as there are good opportunities, the industry will continue consolidating.
"I think the pace will level off. I don't know if it will be in the coming year, but it's something that will run its course. There are not that many companies to play into," he said.
The 'Bigger Than PCs' Market
Semiconductor industry revenue growth has leveled off this year, but a huge driver for the next wave of innovation is already in place.
Autos are using more chips all the time as they move toward being autonomous electronic vehicles. Medical and wearable devices are boosting chip sales. And new features keep sales of Apple iPhones and Samsung Galaxy smartphones at a high level, even as the industry matures and growth rate slows.
Even larger and looming on the horizon, the Internet of Things is expected to encompass all of those products and applications. Analysts are forecasting that the associated market could be bigger than PCs in terms of billions of chips sold.
Basically, IoT means connecting everything to the Internet and to each other. That includes appliances, clothes, medicines, autos, homes -- virtually everything that's part of everyday lives.
Chip designerARM Holdings (ARMH) is among those investing heavily in new technologies to develop the IoT.
On ARM's third-quarter earnings call on Oct. 21, CEO Simon Segars said, "The Internet of Things will smarten our cities, homes, places of work and bring new efficiencies to health care, agriculture and transportation."
Meanwhile, while the industry waits for IoT to gain momentum, chip sales are slack.
The SIA trade group forecasts that global chip sales will rise just 2.3% this year to $343 billion. The growth rate is seen edging up to 3.1% in 2016 amid steady sales of autos and smartphones.
That would be a significant drop from 8.9% growth a decade earlier in 2006, and miles below the double-digit growth 30 years prior, when sales soared 31% to $228.5 billion in 1986.
"In the short run, there are not a lot of true killer apps," Morgan Stanley analyst Mark Edelstone said. "As a result, growth in the semiconductor industry has been more modest" than in the past.
Scalise, who ran the SIA from 1997 to 2011, said that despite the leveling off, he expects chip sales to continue growing.
"Overall the semiconductor industry is doing very well, and revenue continues to tick up. It's a case now where there are new opportunities emerging in the auto market and others," he said.
Brains, Memory & Sensors
It takes a lot of different types of chips -- and chipmakers -- to make smartphones, tablets and PCs.
Intel, the world's largest chipmaker with sales north of $55 billion a year, makes microprocessors -- the "brains" of PCs, network servers and other devices. It wants to get a foot in the door of the IoT market too.
Buying Altera gives Intel new types of chips that can be reprogrammed. "We are excited about the opportunities and innovations that integrated (programmable technology) will make possible, in both the data center and Internet of Things," CEO Brian Krzanich said during Intel's Q3 earnings call on Oct. 13.
Memory chips from Boise, Idaho-basedMicron Technology (MU), South Korea's Samsung and others temporarily hold data while a user is texting on a smartphone or playing games on a tablet.
Microcontrollers -- tiny special-purpose processors made byCypress Semiconductor (CY), and sensors made by NXP Semiconductors,Texas Instruments (TXN) and others -- measure and regulate brightness, temperature, weight and other factors.
Nvidia (NVDA) is a leading supplier of video chips, and Qualcomm (QCOM) provides communications chips.
When it comes to end markets, smartphones are among the biggest users of chips. UBS forecasts that Apple will sell 75 million iPhones in the December quarter. In the third quarter, Apple captured 94% of all smartphone industry profits, racking up $17.8 billion in smartphone operating income.
Semico's Feldhan said the smartphone arena is the only major semiconductor market currently growing unit sales at a double-digit rate, but that growth has limits.
"It's a big market, well over a billion units a year. But this year is probably the last year we will see a double-digit growth rate," Feldhan said.
"Once you get to 1.5 billion units a year, it's hard to maintain that. We expect 13% growth this year, then a drop to 8% next year."
While it cranks out iPhones, Apple is jockeying to be a leader in the Internet of Things too. The Apple Watch is one of the first smart wearable products, and Apple is rumored to be developing technology for autonomous, Web-connected cars.
Currently Apple makes the A9X -- the main processor used in the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6S. It's based on an ARM processor core.
Alphabet (GOOGL)-owned Google in October placed a want ad for a "multimedia chip architect" who can "lead a chip development effort," according to Business Insider. It may follow Apple's example and make chips for its Pixel tablets and other devices.
Even as the IoT starts to take shape, macroeconomic forces are keeping a lid on chip sales.
China's slower economic growth is pressing down on sales.
"The second-largest economy in the world has slowed consumption of tablets and other electronic devices. When you have that large a piece of the pie missing, that affects the world market," Semico's Feldhan said.
The currency-exchange rate is taking a toll too, Robert Castellano, principal at The Information Network, said.
"The strong dollar is throwing a wrench in the works. The Chinese predominantly are buying most of their chips (rather than making them). If they have to keep buying those in strong dollars, that impacts them in terms of being able to purchase chips," Castellano said.
U.S. Is Still The Chip King
"There's an unfolding of technology and new apps that continues to provide new opportunities to grow demand," Scalise said.
"Because of our research, the U.S.-based companies in the semiconductor business are going to continue to hold a roughly 50% market share here at home and globally."
And the focus of U.S. chipmakers on the emerging Internet of Things is one reason for that dominance, according to Morgan Stanley's Edelstone.
The IoT is still in very early stages, Edelstone said, and will require high semiconductor content to enable medical connectivity, wearables and the smart home.
"Those are all Internet of Things apps, and their numbers will continue to grow," he said.
der Fragenkatalog von Xped kam heute zurück. Wie ich erwartet habe, wurden nicht alle Fragen beantwortet. Aber ich poste das einfach mal:
Bereich - Company:
Will there be a new years letter to the shareholders, containing a review to 2015 and a preview to 2016?
This is a good question and a good suggestion. I will certainly do this
What is you expectation for Xped at Christmas 2016?
By this stage, Xpeds ADRC will be deployed in a number of markets in a variety of applications. Several partnerships whereby technology collaboration and/or indirect business channels will be created will also be in operation. We will open up our offices in US and possibly Europe, expand our Asia presence and more than double our employee base
Will you still be CEO after the consolidation with Raya?
Yes, that is the current plan. And Im proud to be selected to continue that role
How many directors will come from Raya?
There will be 4 Board members, 2 from Raya and 2 from Xped
When will you publish the Chip Manufacturer announced at 13.11.15?
Who is the Chip Manufacturer?
What is the reason you dont publish the Chip Manufacturer?
We hope to be able to do this shortly
Bereich - ADRC:
What is the range of the ADRC Shield by communication via 802.15.4?
This could potentially be up to 200m
What is the weight of the ADRC Shield?
Im not certain of its weight but it is light
Is it possible to control a Drone with it?
- Similar Questions about RC-Car, RC-Plane and an underwater robot?
The applications for ADRC are unlimited. All of these requests can be candidates for ADRC. You may have to select different wireless standards for different applications, i.e. Cellular for outdoor to control a plane for instance. Distance issues will probably dictate that.
Propagation of wireless signals in an underwater environment would be somewhat of a challenge Id imagine, although my good friend Alex Kukushkin is perhaps the worlds most knowledgeable person in this field.
Is there a possibility for Companies like Tamiya to spare the separate RC-Control cause every costumer have a Xped App on his phone?
Im sorry but I dont know this company, Tamiya and so am not sure of the question
What is the power consume of one shield?
(Keine Antwort erhalten)
Bereich - Device Browser:
Is the UI configurable for every one?
We are looking at making parts of DeB open sourced so people will be able to customise the UI. Each icon that holds the interface to the device is completely customisable.
Could I change the Icons?
Yes, see previous response
Is there a function to transfer config, connected devices and settings to other smartphones via Bluetooth , wi-fi, sms, mms or even simply by phone number? If yes How is it protected against abuse?
Im not sure of this question Anmerkung Ghoultown: evtl. Frage umformulieren und nochmal stellen
Is it open source?
There are many elements of the ADRC platform that either currently are Open Source or will be in due course. We do intend to make it something that everyone will be able to contribute to, however there will always remain certain areas of our IP that we will retain.
Where can I get the software?
The download address for our software is: http://www.xped.com/company/downloads/
I am a poor Student can I get a Development Kit for free?
Nice try. We are a poor startup company right now so cant afford it Tell me what you will create with this kit first
Die Antwort zur Downloadadresse kam von Michel Partington, alle restlichen Fragen wurden von John Stefanac beantwortet. Das Fragen zum Chiphersteller nicht beantwortet wurden sollte dem Fragesteller eigentlich schon vorher klar gewesen sein. Ich habe diese zur Vollständigkeit trotzdem aufgeführt.
IoT rising out of Asia and Australia
Internet of Things (IoT) has been “the next big thing” for a while now. Machine-to-machine (M2M) communication empowering computers to collect, analyze and utilize data was going to make everything “smart”. Signs of IoT taking over are still few and far between, but if you turn your eyes to the east, a very different picture emerges.
A significant boost in the IoT industry in the Asia-Pacific is building its way to a boom that will affect technology, economics, and politics the world over.
Globally, there are currently 10 billion devices connected to the internet; by 2020, estimations from a Business Insider Intelligence report mention 35 billion. BI also predicts that nearly US$6 trillion will be spent on IoT solutions in the next five years.
What’s true for the western economy is all that much clearer in the east. An increasing amount of companies and startups from Japan, Australia, India and other Asian countries are making headlines in the IoT world.
In a recent report, Frost & Sullivan predicted that in 2016, IoT will be one of the biggest investment venues in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) markets. According to the estimates, the ASEAN IoT market was US$1.68 billion for 2015, and is expected grow to US$7.53 billion by 2020. The main technologies to share the focus will be cyber security, mobile payments and ecommerce.
The report seems to represent the area’s state of mind well. In Australia, the Australian Communication Alliance established a special think tank to prepare for the major changes IoT is about to bring. Their report recommended the government does its part to support IoT deployments, from adjusting licensing to ensuring Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) standards are default.
Some IoT functions are already under way: smart city Adelaide has teamed up with Cisco to create parking sensors to easily direct drivers to available parking places and ease congestions in the city.
Meanwhile, Australian Rail Track Corporation, working with Lockheed Martin, are running trials on a new system of digital signalling for trains, and sensors are being added to the Sydney Harbour Bridge for remote monitoring.
The government is fully engaged in IoT in India too. Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Make in India, an international marketing campaign, in order to attract investors from various tech sectors, including IoT. Several IoT-oriented startup incubators will also be joining the party.
Investors are starting to catch up. SenseGiz, a wearable IoT firm, just raised US$600,000 from two major venture funds in India and in Japan. SenseGiz’s products include STAR, a band or clip that triggers automatic alarms in selected contacts’ phones in case of emergency.
Two more names to look out for are CarIQ, a USB-like device for cars that can track various parameters like engine load and coolant temperature, and send feedback to the driver; and Entrib ShopWorx, which monitors and provides analytics in order to improve manufacturing processes.
Rising to the challenge
China, the world’s largest internet user base, is expected to become one of the world leaders when it comes to IoT. Between 2009-2013 the Chinese IoT market has grown at a staggering pace – from US$27 billion to US$82 billion.
The market is currently engrossed in solving some of the industry challenges it faces. Perhaps the biggest of all is the lack of universal IoT standards, as M2M communications today rely on anything from Wi-Fi and Bluetooth to mobile networks.
China is hoping to develop the standards itself, and for them to become international. It is working on the project with the US, South Korea, Canada and Australia, according to the United States Information Technology Office.
Security is another major challenge for the sector. Cloud breaches and cellphone hacking are a well-documented problem, and could spell disaster in IoT – just imagine an entire hospital cut off from its system. But while a lot is at stake, the gain is even greater: in a developing country, IoT could boost life quality and safety significantly for its citizens.
Neighboring Japan is also preoccupied with overcoming IoT challenges. Their difficulties are often to do with size and market share. Not enough opportunities exist for venture capital investments, and the Japanese startups that do manage to stand on their feet are finding it difficult to find partners outside of Japan. In the world of IoT, for a concept as global as it gets, this is a big problem.
Some startups are showing success, however. Aquabit Spirals raised US$330,000 in a recent seed round in order to develop Smart Plate, a small programmable card that enables ‘bookmarking’ real life items using NFC-enabled IC chips and sending information to the user’s smartphone. No doubt big firms will have to play a major role too. Fujitsu, for one, is already working on its cloud IoT platform, and earlier this year announced its collaboration with Intel on the project.
IoT’s ecommerce potential
One interesting new development in IoT comes from Singapore. Xped, working on IoT from various angles and aiming to “make technology human again”, was awarded a key patent in China. Using mobile devices, Xped’s technology allows users, with one-tap technology, to operate any device found in homes and offices.
The patent deals with creation and distribution of ecoupons using a “tap-to-connect” solution. This could mean a great deal for value-added advertising, as brands will be able to send consumers coupons to their mobile phones when those are used for purchases.
Users will be able to download discounts, future specials, and so on. A consumer visiting a particular food fair, for instance, if they are using an near field communication (NFC) enabled device, could receive coupons encouraging them to visit relevant nearby businesses.
China is one of the largest consumer markets in the world, and in particular, one of the largest smartphone and internet market. This patent awarded to Xped bears a huge potential for growth and, further down the line, for taking over the targeted mobile advertising field.
The Asian-Pacific Internet of Things scene is on the verge of exploding. With enough resources dedicated to the industry, it could become a world leading hub – the Silicone Valley of IoT. This would also have tremendous political value, and push the area further upwards in the global financial market.
IoT is expected to connect more than 1.9 billion devices by 2020, and who the biggest winner is remains to be seen. There’s so much at stake, and a lot to look forward to. That alone is reason enough to keep following it closely.
ich nicht so. Bei einer Kapitalerhöhung zeichnest du zu einem bestimmten Termin deine Anteile zu einem festen Preis.
Hier ist es so, das die Optionen kostenlos sind (das ist bei Optionen normal nicht der Fall) und das sie eine Gültigkeit von 3 Jahren haben. Bei HC wird übrigens ein Wert von ca. 4cent erwartet. Und jetzt erklär mir bitte mal, wo es eine Kapitalerhöhung ist, wenn ich in 1,5 Jahren meine 4cent Optionen bei einem Kurs von 30-40cent wandle. Ich glaube du hast hier einen Denkfehler ;) Oder meinst du, das ist eine langzeit Kapitalerhöhung? Gewissermaßen eine Retart-KE?