Touchscreen trends: New touch technologies growing and application trends

July 17, 2012 — Total touchscreen module revenue will reach $16 billion in 2012, and nearly double in six years, reaching $31.9 billion by 2018, according to the most recent NPD DisplaySearch 2012 Touch Panel Market Analysis. The market growth is being driven by increased demand from display applications such as iPads and other tablet PCs, smart phones, and emerging notebook PC designs.

Touch screen penetration has rapidly increased in mobile phones, handheld games, and game consoles, as well as in tablet PC applications, which are forecast to collectively account for more than $13.6 billion in touch screen revenues this year. In addition, NPD DisplaySearch forecasts strong touch screen growth over the next several years driven by demand in larger display applications such as convertible/hybrid notebook PCs.

Mobile phones are the biggest application for touch screens in terms of unit shipments, accounting for three-fourths of units shipped in 2011. NPD DisplaySearch forecasts that 1.2 billion touch screens will ship for mobile phone applications in 2012, up 68% Y/Y.

Tablet PC is a fast-growing application for touch screens. Shipments tripled in 2010 and reached 79.6 million in 2011. Growth continues to be strong, with NPD DisplaySearch forecasting more than 130 million touch screens for tablet PCs in 2012, and more than 190 million in 2013. Revenues for touch screens in tablet PCs are expected to grow by more than $3 billion in 2013.

Touch penetration is expected to increase dramatically in convertible/hybrid notebook PCs. The Ultrabook by Intel will start to adopt touch screens by end of this year, and Microsoft Surface tablets will also integrate touch screens. NPD DisplaySearch forecasts touch screen penetration on notebook PCs will increase from 2% in 2011 to about 8% in 2013.

Over the next few years, all-in-one PCs and automobile monitors are expected to contribute to touch screen market growth as well. Touch technologies with high transmittance, low power consumption, multi-touch or gesture recognition will benefit the most.

Currently, the leading touch technology is projected capacitive touch; however demand for other technologies is on the rise.

“Demand is growing for thinner, light weight, and lower cost touch panels and devices. In addition, we see strong touch screen growth over the next several years in larger display applications such as convertible/hybrid notebook PCs and all-in-one PCs,” noted Jennifer Colegrove, PhD, Vice President of Emerging Display Technologies at NPD DisplaySearch. “Over the next few years, in-cell, on-cell, and sensor-on-cover touch technologies will surpass the add-on type projected capacitive touch.”

Figure. Touchscreen module revenue forecast. SOURCE: NPD DisplaySearch 2012 Touch Panel Market Analysis.

The NPD DisplaySearch 2012 Touch Panel Market Analysis report is a comprehensive analysis of the touch panel technologies and their market forecasts through 2018. This report has detail breakdown of 23 applications (with TV application added this year), with 12 touch technology categories (including sensor-on-cover and gesture-in-air) and 9 size categories. It also has details on touch controller ICs, the sensor market, shipments by area, and forecasts for multi-touch through 2018. NPD DisplaySearch surveyed over 200 suppliers of touch screen modules, controller ICs, ITO film, and other components.

NPD DisplaySearch is a global market research and consulting firm specializing in the display supply chain, as well as the emerging photovoltaic/solar cell industries. Learn more and access reports at www.displaysearch.com.

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