Industrial networking: Ethernet impacts market growth in Asia-Pacific

By Control Engineering Staff May 15, 2007

Natick, MA— Healthy growth prospects await the world’s $1.7 billion industrial wireline networking infrastructure market, according to a recently published research study from Venture Development Corp . (VDC). “ Industrial Networking Global Market Intelligence Service ” projects the global market for network infrastructure products shipped for use in industrial facilities will increase at almost a 25% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2011.

Of three regions covered in the research, the highest overall market growth rate through 2011 is forecast for the Asia-Pacific region (see figure). Factor driving the high demand for automation in this region include the increasing investment in manufacturing capacity by multinational companies in countries like China. In the markets studied, much of this investment is being directed toward Ethernet-based networking products, making this segment attractive for vendors.

Shipments of these products to Asia-Pacific markets were $298 million in 2006. Of that total, 76% were products for Ethernet networks, and the Ethernet share is forecast to increase to over 81% of a $1 billion market in 2011. These are the highest Ethernet shares among the three major geographic regions (Asia-Pacific; Europe, Middle East; Africa; and the Americas). Bus and network use in the other two regions is more established and harder to displace. However, Ethernet shares in those regions also are expected to increase.

Factors affecting the growth overall include:

  • A general trend to networking in industrial facilities as a means of reducing costs, increasing efficiency, and improving productivity. Networking provides real-time data and information for better control, management, and decision making.

  • The capability of networking to monitor and control operations and machinery remotely. This factor can enhance safety, increase productivity, and reduce the required number of engineers, equipment operators, and maintenance personnel.

  • Networking’s capacity to eliminate point-to-point hard wiring, which is both expensive to install, difficult to troubleshoot, and hard to modify. Networking allows easier add-ons, changes, and removal functions, which is especially valuable in applications where change-outs or expansions are frequent and expensive.

  • The growing acceptance of standard solutions, particularly Ethernet. These provide interoperability of equipment and devices from many suppliers. The competition is leading to better performance and lower prices, says the report.

The study covers a variety of wireline infrastructure products used in industrial facilities. These include networking components such as bridges, device servers, gateways, hubs, modems, routers, switches; industrial-grade interconnect products, including connectors, cable and cord sets, distribution boxes; and network management software (typically sold separately, but bundled with hardware shipments).

Also read, from Control Engineering :

Product Research Industrial Networking

Product Research Industrial Ethernet Protocols


—Edited by
Jeanine Katzel , senior editor, Weekly News
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Of the three regions covered in this study, Asia-Pacific is expected to experience the highest overall market growth rate through 2011. (Source of data and figure: Venture Development Corp.)