Semi market to soar to $385 billion by 2014 -

Our favourite chip analyst, Malcolm Penn of Future Horizons has some great news for the chip industry.

Estimated to be worth $205.2 billion in 2009, the market forecast in 2014 is  for $385.2 billion, according to Penn in his latest Future Horizons report.

Penn breaks down the growth drivers for some of the major segments including PCs, Automotive, Consumer, and Mobile Phones.

Future Horizons says that lower cost PCs will continue but while netbooks have spurred growth, they've made people think PCs are by definition low priced. DDR3 will improve performance for some applications, and a trend to more fashionable and greener PCs. Perhaps more importantly, sales of PCs will show high growth in developing regions rather than replacement sales in saturated regions like Western Europe and North America.

There will be more semiconductors in the average vehicle, including accident avoidance systems and automatic braking. And there will be more entertainment in the car. More electronics will be required for lower cost and more fuel efficient vehicles.

We'll see next generations in 2011 that will include 3D displays, virtual reality and sensory feedback. HD video will pull consumers into buying a better experience, and convergence will continue to push the market.

The world is not yet saturated with mobile phones, warns Penn, so developing countries will feed growth over the next five years. Commoditisation will result in application standard products over custom chips  - that in itself will reduce end user prices. Plus there will be new mobile phone architectures handling different radio protocols.

Said Penn: "The mobile phone is the prime candidate for a converged device and is cramming in new functions year by year. Health monitoring could include heart monitoring, insulin analysis and pollen count indicators."

*EyeSee Malcolm used to be a drummer in Georgie Fame and the Blue Flames. Future Horizons. The video of Yeh Yeh is on YouTube, for some reason. Malcolm can be spotted, briefly.