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By Rich Handley

Frost & Sullivan Report Cites High-Revenue RF Test and Measurement Areas

Frost & Sullivan's latest analysis, titled "Radio Frequency (RF) Test and Measurement (T&M) Market, Forecast to 2023," reports that a high demand from the connected car industry, advancements in wireless communication standards, and pre-5G and 5G technologies are driving industry expansion. The study provides a detailed assessment of key market dynamics, drivers and restraints, revenue forecasts by region, and market share and competitive analysis.

Frost & Sullivan expects the Asia-Pacific region to be the largest and fastest-growing region for RF T&M vendors, with estimated revenues of $1.99 billion by 2023. "Asia has become the manufacturing hub of the world and holds special importance for vendors, but it is also making inroads in research and development (R&D), which will further increase its importance going forward," said Jessy Cavazos, Frost & Sullivan's measurement and instrumentation industry director, in a prepared statement. "This region will also create significant opportunities for T&M vendors in the aerospace and defense industry."

According to the report, North America and Europe will benefit from wireless technologies. Growth in these regions will be bolstered by R&D activity around new wireless communications standards, connected cars and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). With lower activities in emerging regions, the Latin America, Middle East and Africa segments represent about 5 percent of the total market revenues. The five major growth opportunities in the RF T&M market, which are expected to generate more $30 billion in new revenues by 2023, include:

Connected car and autonomous driving: Infotainment systems have evolved tremendously and are now at the core of the value proposition of automakers. The adoption of wireless communications standards like LTE and Wi-Fi is driving demand for more RF testing, and important R&D investments are being made in automotive radar and target simulation.

5G: Extensive ongoing research on 5G technologies is increasing demand for RF T&M equipment, and will continue to do so throughout the forecast period. Demand will go to higher frequencies in the long term, to the detriment of the less-than-8 GHz market.

Modular instrumentation: The penetration of modular electronic instrumentation is expected to continue to align with the multi-channel nature of upcoming end-user technologies; the CAGR from 2016 to 2023 for the modular RF T&M market is 14 percent.

Asia-Pacific: The Asia-Pacific area is expected to witness higher growth than other regions, which will drive an increase in its share to 43.2 percent in 2023.

IoT Devices: Market participants expect narrowband IoT and mobile IoT standards such as Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), LTE-M and SigFox LoRa to create a new part of the market. This trend translates into an increase in parallel testing and generates a market for low-cost instrumentation.

"Market development is being impinged upon by RF instruments having a high price tag, especially high-end test equipment used in R&D applications," Cavazos said in the prepared statement. "Companies across industry verticals are facing customer and competitor pressures to reduce prices, which is spreading throughout the value chain."

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