If you had to plug in a new home office, games console, or set up a new home cinema this Christmas, I'm sure you've already built up a healthy disdain for cables.
A wire-free world is why Ultra Wide Band (UWB) technologies that boast low-power, high data-transferring capabilities wirelessly are such an exciting prospect. Amidst booming data demands, UWB's 480Mbps wireless transmission makes it a game-changer in consumer electronics.
In short, no more cable spaghetti - UWB liberates devices with seamless connectivity, efficiently sharing the existing spectrum.
But this is just the start! Applications of this new tech reach new highs when you consider the tech-based automotive, professional sports, and supply chain industries.
UWB market sizes as of today.
- Asia - exceeding $2 billion in 2023
- USA - exceeding $1 billion as of 2023
- EU - projected to reach €500 million by 2024, with a CAGR of 40%.
Although Europe's UWB market is comparatively the smallest of the big 3, a boom is brewing for more skilled tech workers to develop the tech domestically and compete with North American and Asian markets.
Reasons for the Lag in the EU market:
- Later start: Europe's regulatory approval for UWB spectrums came later than the USA and Asia, hindering early adoption.
- Limited awareness: Consumer awareness about UWB's benefits and use cases still needs to be higher in Europe compared to other regions.
- Supply chain dependence: Dependence on US and Asian chipmakers for UWB components can delay European innovation and adoption.
- Growing ecosystem: Increasing investment in UWB research and development, along with companies like NXP Semiconductors and Ficosa making strides in UWB solutions, bode well for the future.
- Standardization and regulation: EU regulatory approvals simplify implementation and foster compatibility.
- Unique applications: Opportunities in areas like secure access control and industrial automation could position Europe as a leader in specific UWB applications.
- Europe's UWB market is expected to snowball in the coming years, potentially catching up to the USA in the medium term.
- Domestic chip production and innovation investments could further accelerate Europe's UWB adoption and competitiveness.
- Collaboration between companies, research institutions, and government agencies is crucial for unlocking Europe's full UWB potential.
- Smartphone manufacturers adding more UWB capabilities to their devices will be a huge growth driver in the UWB market for the next few years.
By 2025, over 1 Billion annual device shipments of UWB technology are expected to be delivered, according to ABI research.
However, it's crucial to remember that a rough estimate like this could be higher or lower depending on several factors.
Project Timeline: The actual timeline for project funding and execution might differ, impacting the job creation timeline.
Technology Maturity: The maturity of UWB technology and its commercial viability will significantly affect the pace of job creation.
Skill Availability: The existing pool of skilled embedded engineers and researchers with UWB expertise in Europe will influence how quickly companies can hire and create new jobs.
Within my network, this is a positive shift in the right direction for embedded engineers, developers, and researchers. With big tech now relying less on outsourcing from the USA and Asia, EU technology stakeholders are likely to take on new skilled workers in 2024.
Here are some companies I can see benefitting from the UWB boom in the next few years:
- STMicroelectronics (France) - €46.81 billion (Jan 19, 2024)
- Infineon Technologies (Germany) - Valued at €55.4 billion (Jan 19, 2024)
- NXP Semiconductors (Netherlands) - Valued at €50.54 billion (Jan 19, 2024)
Tech giants such as Apple, Samsung, and BMW have already integrated UWB into their products in the past couple of years. Their influence will shift the standard in tech towards cutting-edge tech capabilities and create a wealth of new job opportunities in Europe's UWB job market.
If you're hiring in embedded this year or looking for an exciting role within this emerging tech, contact me via my profile for our latest opportunities.
Thank you, allaboutcircuits.com, for some insight that went into this article.