August 12, 2011 — Tom Hausken, Strategies Unlimited, shares his light emitting diode (LED) forecast, including drivers like new LED backlights and general LED lighting, in a video interview from SEMICON West 2011. He sees 13-15% LED industry growth in the future, after nearly double growth from 2009 to 2010.
High-brightness LEDs (HB-LEDs) started out in commercial applications with automotive uses, then mobile phone backlights. Now, LED TV backlights are driving a growth surge. Once this market is saturated, price erosion should naturally occur, Hausken says. LED lighting is also pushing a cycle of LED growth.
Manufacturing issues? Metal organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) is critical, but it is slow and expensive, Hausken notes. To ramp up LED production, makers need many MOCVD machines. However, Strategies Unlimited thinks that only a percentage of the MOCVD systems shipping now are going to be used in production, as operation expertise lags behind machine purchases and shipments.
While there will be a shake-out in the market, as competition takes place for top suppliers, low-end supplier dominance, etc., Hausken is not concerned about a bubble in LED markets. He also sees global LED manufacturing options, not simply China-based production alone.