Gartner on Wednesday raised its worldwide semiconductor revenue forecast for this year as sales of devices like smartphones and tablets gain steam. Gartner is now projecting revenue this year to reach $300 billion, a 31.5 percent increase compared to 2009. The research firm earlier projected a 27.1 percent revenue increase.
Consumer electronics, including mobile phones and laptops, account for the bulk of semiconductor sales. Continued growth in mobile phone shipments will sustain semiconductor revenue growth, and a slowdown in the PC shipments will be offset by growing sales of tablets, Gartner said.
Gartner on Tuesday projected PC shipments to continue growing, but at a slower rate than previously expected. The slowdown was attributed to uncertain economic conditions in Europe and the US. Despite the PC shipment slowdown, revenue for NAND flash and DRAM revenue will grow this year, Gartner said.
DRAM revenue will increase by 82.5 percent to nearly $42 billion this year, but could slow down starting in the second half of next year. The company expects a decline in DRAM sales in 2012. NAND flash revenue will continue to grow through 2013, Gartner said. Analyst firms have said NAND revenue has grown partly due to the growing storage needs in mobile devices and PCs.
Semiconductors also are used in a range of products, including cars and medical equipment. Softening demand for a wide range of products during the recession resulted in worldwide semiconductor revenue declines in 2008 and 2009.