In recent years, the electronics industry has been a continuous hot topic, spanning from cloud computing, 5G, IoT/IIoT, and big data to AR, VR, and emerging technologies like electric vehicles and artificial intelligence. Navigating through these diverse industry trends, distinguishing between definitive trends and transient phenomena is challenging, especially with the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and geopolitical issues affecting the supply chain. Manufacturers face significant challenges in clarifying these issues.
To accurately grasp critical future market trends, Molex invests heavily in conducting a series of global surveys targeted at engineers worldwide. These surveys gather relevant data for analysis, providing insights into current industry dynamics and future market trends. Molex has conducted global surveys on “Industry 4.0 Status,” “Outlook for the Future of Mobile Devices,” “Wearable Diagnostic Devices: Global Survey on Future Medical Monitoring,” global design engineering innovation survey results, and “Data Centers on Wheels,” a global automotive survey. These surveys are valuable for manufacturers and design engineers to understand industry trends, prepare for potential issues and challenges, and introduce market-competitive products within an accurate timeframe.
David Ho, Vice President of Sales for Molex in the Asia-Pacific South region, stated that in the past few years, Molex has particularly focused on markets such as automotive, consumer electronics, 5G, connected vehicles, and big data. Over the last year, it has been evident that most leading global automotive manufacturers have entered or are planning to enter the electric vehicle market, including automotive manufacturers in China. Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) have become a standard feature in many electric vehicles. Molex has invested significantly in developing innovative solutions, positioning itself at the forefront of these ever-evolving demand trends. In the consumer market, mobile phone technology continues to advance, with more powerful performance, faster speed, support for 5G networks, longer battery life, and higher camera resolutions. In the post-pandemic era, all these trends are expected to continue. Another exciting area is the hyperscale market, which experienced technological advancements in 2022, upgrading from 200G to 400G and then to 800G. Solutions involving fiber optics may be required from 800G onwards, and Molex’s solutions can meet all these demands.
Future Technological Trends
Several key sectors, including automotive, industrial, and communication, are expected to witness the following trends in the future.
Automotive Applications Emphasizing Data
- Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) will rely on data from a range of sensors, cameras, and LiDAR systems, along with artificial intelligence applications for data analysis. The aim is to identify road hazards and display this information intuitively on integrated screens.
- Automotive manufacturers will take regulatory measures to achieve Level 2 and Level 3 autonomous driving. Industry interest and investments will focus on making Level 2 and Level 3 autonomous driving technologies accessible to the mass market.
- Significant investments in battery management, zoning architecture, and electric vehicle charging stations will take precedence.
- The industry will need to enhance automotive infrastructure, and this emerging demand is expected to continually rise in the next 12 to 18 months. Consequently, there will be a growing need for intelligent sensors and high-speed connectors in the industry.
Industrial Metaverse Influencing Consumer Devices and IIoT Solutions
- AR/VR will leverage its early success in the industrial sector to provide insights into the future development of consumer applications. While it may not become mainstream in the next five years, new products from companies like Apple, Meta, and others will illuminate the not-so-distant future.
- Given the compelling industrial IoT use cases in the industrial environment, investments in industrial IoT are expected to increase.
- With the investments made by enterprises over the past few years, IoT in factories and other industrial environments, including robots and artificial intelligence, will experience a significant increase in usage.
- The supply chain for consumer devices will diversify to keep up with the continuous changes in the market.
- The mobile device supply chain may continue to expand beyond China, accelerating its expansion. This will lead major equipment manufacturers in the United States and even China to increase investments in India and other Asian countries.
Continued Focus on Processing Speed and Storage Capacity in Data Center Investments
- The insatiable demand for computing speed and storage capacity continues. The explosive growth in IoT, consumer, and commercial product applications will create a macro trend for more powerful data computing and storage capabilities.
- Investment in edge computing will occupy the largest share of investments. The shift toward Extended Reality (XR) will move data processing to the edge for more real-time inferences, realizing the expected functionalities of edge computing.
- The demand for personalized/customized healthcare solutions will take center stage.
- The boundary between consumer and regulated products remains blurred, presenting a challenge to the industry. If suppliers offer wearable diagnostic devices and use tracking software for fitness, mental health, and other applications, they must adapt to regulatory environments, requiring specialized expertise.
- Data privacy and security remain paramount. In remote patient monitoring, doctors are increasingly less concerned about signal connectivity performance, focusing more on obtaining actionable real-time information analysis results, especially in the presence of privacy and security-sensitive information.
- The market for mental health diagnostic applications is expected to emerge. In the post-pandemic era, heightened human focus on comprehensive health opens greater opportunities for mental health diagnostic solutions.
Today, due to the potential for irresistible global social, political, or economic events, predicting the future development trends of a specific industry has become increasingly challenging. What leading enterprises can do is transform these “trends” into successful commercial production, providing support to customers and assisting them in seeking the right solutions as they enter 2023.