IMS Report: Rapid growth seen in industrial PC market

Factory automation increases will drive worldwide growth rate of 75% by 2015


The world market for industrial PCs could reach $3.52 billion by 2015, according to a new report from IMS Research. That would be a 75% increased from the current IPC market of $2.07 billion.

The world IPC market was hit very hard by the global recession. The 2010 IPC market rebounded strongly; with all regions and sectors registering strong growth as projects that had been postponed came back on line and IPC distributors and users replenished stock.

Report author Mark Watson talked with CFE Media about how market factors in manufacturing, specifically factory automation, would impact the overall market going forward:

CFE: The report notes much of the growth in the industrial PC market is in areas outside of factory automation. What is the prospect in this market by itself, especially in the developed markets?

Watson: At a world level the factory automation sector is forecast an annual average growth rate of about 9% to 2015, which is below the rates projected for the sectors mentioned in the release. However, due to the large size of the initial market (almost 50% of total IPC sales revenue in 2010), the factory automation sector will see good revenue growth over the forecast period.

CFE: The growth of automation in emerging markets will mean a growth in industrial PC use. What are some of the barriers to growth in these markets?

Watson: Adoption of competitive solutions such as PLC + operator terminal, embedded computer boards and (rugged) mobile devices may all negatively impact on future IPC revenue growth. At present the economic uncertainty and strict lending mean that some projects cannot get funding, which also will impact automation component markets.

CFE: Is the definition of industrial PC expanding to include new technologies such as tablets and smartphones?

Watson: Within the IPC report we do not include any rugged mobile computers or consumer devices that are used in a harsh environment. We are looking to do a separate piece of research on this market late in 2H12.

CFE: Which area in the industrial PC market seems to get the most attention: information display, data management or integrated control? Which area seems to be driving new equipment or replacement purchases?

Watson: As system performance increases and relative prices decrease it seems that IPCs are being used for multiple functions and are especially well suited for integrating the factory network with the enterprise network. Data can be easily gathered, analyzed and distributed so that accurate info is available at all levels of the organization. Multi-core processors and hypervisors are being used to run different apps simultaneously. Widescreen displays are also being used to display more data (for multiple apps) at the same time. IPCs are being used more for machine control but the PLC still dominates this application. More likely, going forward, PLCs and IPCs will be used alongside each other.

IMS Research

No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Choosing controllers: PLCs, PACs, IPCs, DCS? What's best for your application?; Wireless trends; Design, integration; Manufacturing Day; Product Exclusive
Variable speed drives: Smooth, efficient, electrically quite motion control; Process control upgrades; Mobile intelligence; Product finalists: Vote now; Product Exclusives
Machine design tips: Pneumatic or electric; Software upgrades; Ethernet advantages; Additive manufacturing; Engineering Leaders; Product exclusives: PLC, HMI, IO
This article collection contains the 5 most referenced articles on improving the use of PID.
Learn how Industry 4.0 adds supply chain efficiency, optimizes pricing, improves quality, and more.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again
Pipeline vulnerabilities? Securing hydrocarbon transit; Predictive analytics hit the mainstream; Dirty pipelines decrease flow, production—pig your line; Ensuring pipeline physical and cyber security