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Electronics news digest

30 September 2020 News

South Africa

• The Development Bank of Southern Africa and the Industrial Development Corporation have committed project development funding to Mitochondria Energy Company, a South African business that was established to provide affordable, reliable and sustainable energy services. The funding is to complete the bankable feasibility study on a stationary fuel cell energy solution. The project aims to strengthen the energy sector in South Africa through locally produced fuel cell technology. The objectives of this project are to design a 250 kW fuel cell system and construct a facility to commercially manufacture and sell the fuel cell units. The goal is to stimulate demand for fuel cell energy generation systems and promote the use of combined heat and power from fuel cells.

• RS Components is now stocking a new range of Surface Mounted Technology (SMT), Low Insertion Force (LIF) connectors from Würth Elektronik. Leveraging low profile, lightweight and secure and removable connection, they are made to measure applications requiring connection to small displays such as wearables. The SMT LIF connectors are a wire-to-board solution to fasten wires to a printed circuit board (PCB) inside electronic equipment, quickly and reliably. Designed for flat flexible cables (FFC) as counterparts, they deliver excellent cable retention even in small sizes.

Overseas

• The booming stay-at-home economy has benefited the graphics card market, whose remarkable shipment performance that began in 2Q20 is expected to persist. The highlights are NVIDIA’s recently announced Ampere cards and AMD’s Big Navi, which will be released in 4Q20. GDDR5 prices may enter into an upswing against the overall decrease in DRAM prices in 4Q20, while the decline in GDDR6 prices is expected to narrow. On the supply side of the graphics DRAM market, the three dominant suppliers, Samsung, SK Hynix and Micron are accelerating their efforts to shift production capacity from GDDR5 to GDDR6 this year. On the demand side, lowered production capacity and high demand have resulted in a tight supply situation for GDDR5. The supply of GDDR5 is expected to remain tight until the increased production and shipment of the new NVIDIA Ampere graphics cards, while GDDR5 contract prices are likely to enter an upsurge ahead of other DRAM products. Demand is expected to take off for GDDR6 thanks to its deployment in game consoles like Xbox Series X and PS5. Furthermore, GDDR6 has been adopted for new products across all price segments of the graphics card market.

• According to StockApps.com, the collective market cap of the top 10 companies on the S&P 500 as of mid-August reached $8 trillion.

Of these, the top five companies collectively increased by 37% from January to the end of July. During the same period, all other S&P; stocks declined a collective -6%. Apple leads the pack with a market cap of $2,1 trillion. Microsoft and Amazon take second and third place with $1,7 trillion and $1,4 trillion, respectively. Facebook is fourth with $700 billion and Alphabet Inc Class A is fifth with $488,9 billion. In mid-August 2020, these five companies constituted 20% of the total worth of the stock market. Amazon recorded the best YTD performance up to end July.

• Mouser Electronics has announced a global distribution agreement with iWave Systems, enhancing the global reach of iWave’s extensive portfolio of system-on-modules (SoMs). Through the agreement, Mouser now stocks iWave’s SoMs based on Xilinx, NXP Semiconductors and Intel PSG technologies for industrial, automotive, medical, imaging, networking and artificial intelligence applications. Featuring enhanced processing system and processing logic functionality, the SoMs offer improved security and robustness and exceptional memory and transceiver performances for use in high end applications such as 4K video, deep neural AI and machine learning, automotive imaging radar and high-speed networking.

• Soaring pandemic-inspired demand for chips that power everything from communications and IT infrastructures to personal computing, gaming and healthcare electronics will drive an 8% increase in global fab equipment spending in 2020 and a 13% increase in 2021, according to SEMI’s World Fab Forecast report. Rising demand for semiconductors for datacentre infrastructures and server storage, along with the buildup of safety stock as US-China trade tensions intensify, are also contributing to this year’s growth. The bullish trend for overall fab equipment investments comes as the semiconductor industry recovers from a 9% decline in fab spending in 2019 and navigates a roller coaster 2020.

• The number of cellular IoT connections in the retail industry reached 72,4 million worldwide in 2019, according to a new report from Berg Insight. Cellular IoT technology enables devices such as POS terminals, ATMs, digital signs and ticketing machines to be used at locations where fixed line connectivity is unavailable or impractical. The technology has a transformational effect on markets such as vending and parking, where machine operators need to reorganise their operations in order to benefit from the availability of real-time information. The number of cellular IoT connections in the global retail industry will reach 116.6 million in 2024. POS terminals constitute the largest device segment and accounted for 91% of all cellular IoT connections in the retail industry in 2019.




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