STMicroelectronics, a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications, today announced it has shipped three billion MEMS sensors to date—laid side by side, these chips would exceed the height of Mt Everest 1. The achievement reconfirms ST’s position as the clear leader in MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) devices for consumer and portable applications 2.
According to information and analytics firm IHS, ST’s total MEMS and sensor sales grew more than 19% in 2012, reaching a total of approximately $800 million. In the largest of these markets, motion sensors in mobile handsets and tablets, ST’s MEMS sales accounted for 48% of the market, well more than twice as large as that of its closest competitor, according to IHS.
“Our research shows that, in the mobile market, ST is the number one MEMS supplier across all of the important mobile handset operating systems,” said Jeremie Bouchaud, director and senior principal analyst for MEMS and sensors at IHS. “Even in the highly competitive Android market, ST has nearly twice the market share of its nearest competitor.”
ST’s MEMS sensors have enabled motion-activated user interfaces in many different popular consumer devices, including most of the leading smart phones, tablets, personal media players, game consoles, digital still cameras and remotes, making these more accessible and appealing to people. ST’s MEMS devices are also widely used for free-fall protection in laptop hard-disk drives, in many health and fitness products, and for car infotainment and enhanced navigation. Today, they are being designed into new applications as varied as providing the crispest, clearest audio in mobile communications and adding localized weather/environmental monitoring capabilities to consumers’ mobile devices.
“Sensors play a crucial role in the evolving wireless world, in enabling the intuitive gesture-based control that is increasingly expected as the norm and in paving the way for new services and user experiences,” said Benedetto Vigna, ST Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Analog, MEMS & Sensors Group. “From sensors to secure communications, from power management to display driving and projection, ST solutions are enabling wave after wave of innovation in the wireless world that is changing the lives of people everywhere.”
The one-stop MEMS supplier of choice, ST offers a comprehensive portfolio of micro-machined accelerometers, gyroscopes, pressure sensors, magnetic sensors, and microphones and has the capability to integrate these in multi-sensor combos with on-board signal processing, control functions, sensor-fusion algorithms, and wireless connectivity. Not only the clear market leader, ST is also at the forefront of MEMS technology development with more than 600 MEMS-related patent families, ST leads the way towards intelligent and independent sensing devices that will open new horizons in consumer electronics, healthcare, environmental sciences, and many other domains.