After turning the tide in 2020 from the first decline in more than a decade, RF GaAs device revenue continued its upward trajectory in 2021. The Strategy Analytics Advanced Semiconductor Applications (ASA) report “RF GaAs Device Technology and Market Forecast: 2021 - 2026” identifies 5G devices and networks as the primary reason for this growth, but it also points out some trouble on the horizon. The report forecasts that revenue will decline in 2022 as inflation, trade sanctions, supply chain issues and global economic uncertainty prove too much to overcome. Beyond 2022, growth will resume with RF GaAs device revenue approaching $9.3 billion by 2026. Wider deployment of 5G handsets and networks will be the growth engine for future RF GaAs device revenue growth.

“The RF GaAs device market has been pretty impervious to the forces affecting global economies the past few years,” noted Eric Higham, director of the ASA and Advanced Defense System service. “GaAs device revenue ties so strongly to the cellular market and the uptake of 5G with more RF content has powered revenue growth these past two years.” He went on to say, “However, we now see substantial softening of handset demand in 2022 that will cause RF GaAs device revenue to drop in 2022. Fortunately, the underlying growth trends remain strong and as inflation subsides and global economies get back to growth, RF GaAs device revenue will turn upward.”