THIN FILM IPD - APPLICATIONS OVERVIEW

Driven by miniaturization, higher performance, and lower cost, IPD market is showing great business opportunities

Extracted from: Thin-Film Integrated Passive Devices report, Yole Développement – February 2018

OUTLINES:

  • Driven by miniaturization, higher performance, and lower cost, IPD devices offer great opportunities in the smartphone market.
  • Despite silicon’s domination in the IPD market, alternative substrates are disrupting the RF IPD market.
  • Different business models and different expectations for a complex supply chain.

LYON, France – February 12, 2018: Driven by application diversification, IPDs continue their promising growth, announces Yole Développement (Yole). Miniaturization and integration are key drivers in electronic devices. This is even more critical in several consumer applications, where thinner devices mean higher integration levels, necessitating low-profile components.
The thin-film IPD process offers finer pitch feature, better tolerance control, higher flexibility, and packages possessing higher integration than other commonly available technologies. These aspects explain IPD’s expansion over the last years, and its promising continued growth.
Yole releases today a dedicated report focused on the IPD market in the field of semiconductor applications: Thin-Film Integrated Passive Devices. Aim of this analysis is to provide a deep understanding of the applications, the technology trends and market forecasts by market segment. Under this new technology and market survey, Yole’s analysts provide detailed information regarding IPD devices applicability, major today’s applications and applications potentially requiring different types of IPD substrates. IPD devices roadmap per application, status of the IPD adoption, technological trends, competitive landscape and more are part of this IPD report…
What are the market drivers? What is the status of the RF IPD industry? What are the different business models? Yole’s analysts invite you to learn more about IPD devices market opportunities.

Despite silicon’s domination in the IPD market, alternative substrates are disrupting the RF IPD market. “In 2017 the overall IPD market generated a revenue exceeding US$750 million, and is expected to peak at more than US$1 billion by 2022,” asserts Amandine Pizzagalli, Technology & Market Analyst at Yole. As of 2017, this market is driven mostly by the ESD/EMI IPDs market, which represents more than 60% of the total IPD market, followed by RF IPD. Mixed signal IPD did not represent a significant volume and is still an emerging IPD market.

Although it is difficult to predict the success of digital mixed signal IPD, we see a small penetration rate (driven mainly by decoupling applications) in smartphone processors, where miniaturization is a key driver. Moreover, a few medical applications also require decoupling capacitors in IPD format, where again miniaturization and high capacitance density are essential.

In terms of substrate material, although silicon remains the only mainstream solution for ESD/EMI IPD and digital mixed signal (presently 100% in these IPD commercial devices), there are a wide variety of substrates available for RF IPD manufacturing. Indeed, advanced requirements such as substrate loss are considered for RF applications. Also, due to the limitation in terms of insertion loss as well as dielectric loss for silicon, various alternative substrates such as glass and GaAs are being integrated into some RF IPD products manufactured by STMicroelectronics, Murata, Qorvo, and others.

Glass is an appealing choice for high-frequency applications requiring low dielectric loss and low insertion loss. Meanwhile, GaAs is especially advantageous for its smaller size and higher performance in terms of linearity and noise characteristics, especially at high frequencies. Consequently, we expect these substrates to take market share in the RF IPD market.

This report offers a comprehensive overview of the substrates used in each IPD manufacturing process, a detailed analysis of technology trends, and a market forecast by IPD application type. Moreover, an IPD market forecast split by wafer size and substrate type has been calculated for the 2016 - 2022 timeframe.

In the IPD market segment, the consulting company Yole identified different business models and expectations facing complex supply chain. Therefore, IPDs have a variety of applications and high potential in numerous areas. This, combined with large range of solutions, creates a diversified supply chain - depending on the end-application targeted.

“This diversity is actually even more complex considering the different types of manufacturers and their business models: pure players, OSATs , IDMs , foundries, etc.”, details Jérôme, Azémar, Senior Technology & Market Analyst at Yole. Therefore many producer types can be involved in IPDs but with different resources and objectives.
IDMs/foundries use IPDs as options to complete their offers and make them more appealing for customers. The focus is not to make a pure business of IPD, but to use it as an added-value for their products. “The most illustrative example is TSMC promoting its decoupling capacitors to save more space and increase efficiency in Apple’s processors – a solution that has opened the door for IPD in large volumes for advanced applications”, says Mattin Grao Txapartegi, Technology & MarketAnalyst at Yole.
OSATs have a similar approach in terms of priority and promotion, but with different integration capabilities. Most OSATs have IPD offers in their portfolio and implement them upon customer request. Their solutions are either more standardized IPDs, or supplied from pure players to integrate them in packages afterwards.
Pure players like IPDiA, now part of Murata are, by definition, pushing for the spread of IPD solutions. These solutions must convince customers that they are vital for implementing passives in their integration. In order for this to happen, IPDs must be seen either as an easily-outsourceable commodity or as a differentiator justifying new supplies. In both cases strong development is required, which pure players are pushing for…

A full description of this new technology & market analysis is available on i-micronews.com, advanced packaging reports section.

Acronyms:
IPD: Integrated Passive Device
RF : Radio Frequency
EMI : ElectroMagnetic Interference
ESD : ElectroStatic Discharge
GaAs : Gallium Arsenide
OSAT : Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test company
IDM : Integrated Devices Manufacturer

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