Trillion+ semiconductor units shipped again this year

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Total semiconductor shipments will rise 13 percent in 2021 to 1.1 trillion units, IC Insights predicts. The 13 percent increase follows a 3 percent increase in 2020 as the Covid-19 pandemic was wreaking havoc across many segments of the economy. If the forecast is correct, it would mark the third time that semiconductor shipments per year exceed the trillion unit mark – the first time being 2018.

From 1978, when 32.6 billion units were shipped, through 2021, the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for semiconductor units is forecast to be 8.6 percent — an impressive 43-year annual growth rate. Since for many key semiconductor applications such as PCs and cellphones the growth rate has waned, the strong CAGR also demonstrates that new market drivers continue to emerge that fuel demand for more semiconductors.

Optoelectronics, sensor/actuator and discrete (OSD) devices are included in IC Insights’ forecast.