Test and Measurement Industry: Transformational Shifts Ahead
The electronic test and measurement (T&M) industry has been taken by storm lately with trends such as Internet of Things (IoT), millimeter-wave (mm-wave) frequencies, and 5G suggesting significant changes in requirements for test equipment thus opening up opportunities for vendors, according to Frost & Sullivan.
Growth Prospects and Key Trends for Electronic T&M
Used across the lifecycle of a product, from research and development (R&D) to manufacturing to deployment, T&M instruments are critical to ensure product performance and shorten time-to-market (TTM) although customer requirements differ widely across these segments. Generating about $2 billion globally in 2015, the R&D segment of the new general purpose test market is expected to witness single-digit growth rates over the next five years that will steadily accelerate and results in the market reaching $2.4 billion by 2021.
The R&D T&M market will benefit from high-speed digital trends and a revitalized bit error ratio tester (BERT) market driven by the data center buildout with the emergence of 400 gigabit Ethernet (GbE) technologies and complex modulation signals such as Pulse Amplitude Modulation (PAM)-4. Although the R&D T&M market relies heavily on the oscilloscopes market, the contribution of radio frequency/microwave (RF/MW) test equipment to the revenues will be much greater five years from now, especially that of signal analyzers.
RF/MW T&M equipment such as signal generators, network analyzers, and power meters will also benefit from the move to higher frequencies and wider bandwidths not only due to the advent of disruptive technologies such as 5G but also a general move toward higher frequencies in aerospace and defense (A&D), automotive radars, and other industries. Today, over half of the market revenue for T&M equipment used in the laboratory come from instruments with a frequency range of up to 6 GHz. By 2021, the share of revenue coming from instruments with a frequency range of over 26.5 GHz will be about 5 percent higher than it was in 2015.