Electronica 2012 leaves industry feeling confident

Electronica 2012, the International Trade Fair for Electronic Components, Systems and Applications, has come to a close and the organisers have reported that it was attended by over 72,000 visitors. A total of 2,669 exhibitors from 49 countries were present and were able to demonstrate a broad range of application-oriented solutions during the four-day fair, which revolved around intelligent and energy-efficient solutions in the sectors for energy storage, LEDs and smart grids. Smart grids were also the focus of this year’s CEO Round Table, one of the highlights in the related-events program.

Commenting Norbert Bargmann, Deputy CEO of Messe München,said he was more than satisfied with the fair’s results: “The results of this year’s fair confirm the electronics industry’s significance as the most important branch of industry in the world. Everyone was here.”

This year’s hot topics included energy-efficient technologies and the latest developments in medical electronics. Automotive electronics, which account for an ever-increasing share of modern motor vehicles, was acentral theme in all exhibition categories: from control elements for energy harvesting and battery management to new charging techniques for electric automobiles.

As the show came to a close there was a sense of cautious optimism about 2013. That was confirmed by Christoph Stoppok, Managing Director of the Electronic Components and Systems Association and the PCB and Electronic Systems Association in the ZVEI (German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers” Association): “After the slump, we expect the world market for electronic components to grow by some four percent to $480bn. Forecasts also call for an increase in sales in the global semiconductor industry.”

More than 72,000 trade visitors from 78 countries came to Munich. According to a survey by marketing-research institute TNS Infratest, visitors gave the event a 95 percent rating of good to excellent.

Alongside Germany, the countries with the largest contingents of visitors were Italy, Austria, Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Switzerland, France, the Russian Federation and the USA, in that order. The number of visitors from Canada, the Russian Federation, Turkey, the USA, the Czech Republic, Austria and Asia also saw a significance increase.

Nicole Schmitt, Exhibition Group Director for electronica: “The large percentage of international guests proves once again that electronica is the world’s leading trade fair for the electronics industry.”

2,669 exhibitors from 49 countries presented their products and technologies. Besides Germany, the countries with the largest numbers of exhibitors were China, Taiwan, the USA, Great Britain, Italy, Hong Kong, France, Switzerland and Japan, in that order.

The speakers at this year’s CEO Round Table all agree on one thing: “Smart grid” will be one of the electronics industry’s key topics in the future. The four CEOs from STMicroelectronics, NXP Semiconductors, Freescale Semiconductor and Infineon Technologies saw that as a great opportunity for the semiconductor industry. After all, without smart meters and smart lighting solutions, it will not be possible to ensure the energy-efficient supply of electricity in the future. The industry still faces a few challenges. Electricity must be fed, transported and controlled, and several components are needed to do so. The interaction and reliability of these components are essential to avoid ultimately ending up in the dark.

More than 200 people including visitors from Denmark, Finland, Taiwan and the USA participated in the first embedded platforms conference. They gathered information about solution approaches and services for developing embedded platforms. Some 300 participants from 19 countries attended the electronica automotive conference, which focused on topics such as cost to design and car-to-car communication. For example: In the future, WLAN-based technology will make it possible for motor vehicles to communicate with one another, even at high speeds.

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