Backlit LED market drives digital TV semiconductor growth

The market for digital TV (DTV) semiconductors will see double digit growth in 2011, with backlit LED TVs leading the way.

The entire segment is expected to grow by 16.5 percent, though IHS iSuppli statistics show that the market will be massively reliant on the rise of LED backlight chips as consumers demand more sophisticated TV sets.

Overall DTV semiconductor revenue is expected to reach $15.5 billion, also an improvement on 2010 where revenues hit $13.3 billion.  This will continue up until 2014 with revenues reaching $19 billion.

While the market appears to be healthy there will be a deceleration of growth this year compared to the last, with half the expansion rate seen during last year’s recovery from 2009 global slump.

It appears that the growth expected for overall DTV semi market is largely due to the LED backlighting segment, with DTV only amount to only 4.1 percent if LED backlights are taken out of the equation.

The LED segment will jump 138.4 percent this year, from $1.3 billion in 2010 to $3.1 billion during 2011.

LED backlight chips will account for $5.5bn in revenue by 2014, showing how commonplace the technology is expected to become in households, with forecasts that LED sets will account for more than 80 percent of all flat-screen TVs by that time.

This is compared to just $370 million in revenues and being present in only three percent of digital TVs in 2009.

“The disparity in growth between the overall DTV semiconductor market and the LED backlighting segment points to divergent dynamics in the television space today,” said Randy Lawson, manager and principal analyst for display and consumer electronics at IHS.

“On one end of the continuum, the slowdown of the DTV semiconductor market mirrors the general deceleration of growth in the worldwide television market, particularly in the United States and the European Union. It also reflects the decline in average selling prices of television semiconductors.

“The opposite side of the spectrum, however, exhibits a vigorous, ever-expanding LED backlighting segment within the industry—borne by the continued transition among manufacturers to feature the new technology in product offerings, as well as by the adoption among consumers of fashionable, ultra-thin LED sets in to their homes.”

A number of other technologies will aid the continued growth of the digital TV semiconductor market, such as the adoption of 3D, a frame-rate conversion jump from 120Hz to 240Hz and wireless connectivity.