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December 2010

2011 Semiconductor Preview

We can all agree, 2010 has been a great year:  +30% growth over 2009.  The economic recovery has been a breath of fresh air after the downturn in the world economy over the last couple years.  Semico predicts 2011 semiconductor revenues to grow less than 10% over 2010.  At first glance, this looks like bad news.  After all, a drop of almost 25 percentage points has to be bad, right?  However, in reality 2011 represents a return to a normal semiconductor sales cycle.  2010 growth was so huge because 2009 was so awful.  2011's growth will be softer because 2010 was so strong, particularly in DRAM, which grew 75% over 2009. Let's focus on:

Semico Executive Brief: Mid-Range Cell Phones

The cell phone market is separated into three categories, based on their total semiconductor dollar content over the forecast period. The three categories are basic, mid-range, and high-end. Mid-range cell phones have a total semiconductor content of $20 to $60 and will have a 2010-2014 CAGR of 2.3%, reaching ~755m units in 2014.

The Executive Briefs cycle through 33 markets per year. Our analysts look to the segments that account for >80% of semiconductors, meaning our list of markets is fluid; we’re constantly adding new high growth markets to the list.

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Semico Executive Brief: Basic Cell Phones

The cell phone market is separated into three categories, based on their total semiconductor dollar content over the forecast period. The three categories are basic, mid-range, and high-end. Basic cell phones have a total semiconductor content of less than $20 and will have a 2010-2014 CAGR of 10.5%, reaching ~300m units in 2014.

The Executive Briefs cycle through 33 markets per year. Our analysts look to the segments that account for >80% of semiconductors, meaning our list of markets is fluid; we’re constantly adding new high growth markets to the list.

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The Nissan Leaf, Getting Charged Up For The Future!

Automotive is an important market for the semiconductor industry.  In turn the semiconductor industry has enabled car manufacturers to make major improvements in safety and performance.  Even though the number of vehicles manufactured grows by low single digits the amount of electronics per vehicle keeps increasing.  In 2008 and 2009 the automotive industry suffered severe losses, but in 2010 this market has seen a strong resurgence.  Semico believes this momentum will drive automotive semiconductor growth for the next few years.

The next stage in the evolution of the automobile is a new energy source – a renewable energy source.  The concern for air pollution and the increasing cost of fossil fuel is driving this.  Both Nissan and Chevrolet have major programs that they are launching in late 2010 and 2011, the Leaf and the Volt, respectively.  The Leaf is all electric plug-in while the Volt is an electric plug-in with additional electric generation from an in car gas powered generator.

On December 4, 2010 I had the opportunity to test drive the Nissan Leaf.  The company has a demonstration tour in the US at this time.  There was an event in Tempe, AZ during an arts festival.  My wife and I had reservations, but there was also a steady stream of people walking in to test drive.

Semico Executive Brief: High-End Cell Phones

The cell phone market is separated into three categories, based on their total semiconductor dollar content over the forecast period. The three categories are basic, mid-range, and high-end. High-end cell phones have a total semiconductor content of greater than $60 and will have a 2010-2014 CAGR of 9.8%, reaching ~460m units in 2014.

The Executive Briefs cycle through 33 markets per year. Our analysts look to the segments that account for >80% of semiconductors, meaning our list of markets is fluid; we’re constantly adding new high growth markets to the list.

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MCU Memory Trends: How Much and What Kind?

Source: Semico Research Corp. and SIA/WSTS

Phoenix, Arizona December 7, 2010 - 2009 was a rough year for most semiconductors, and MCUs were no exception. A major reason for the 2009 MCU sales decline was a sharp drop in overall average selling prices comounded with the severe drop in end-use demand, especially in the automotive market. The high rate of ASP decline was indicative of the tough economic conditions impacting the semiconductor industry:

Wafer Demand Summary and Assumptions 4Q10

The Wafer Demand Summary and Assumptions is a quarterly publication. It includes an excel spreadsheet with annual wafer demand by product by technology from 2002-2015. Product categories include DRAM, SRAM, NAND, NOR, Other Non-volatile, MPU, MCU, DSP, Computing Micro Logic, Communications, Other Micro Logic, Programmable Logic, Standard Cell, Gate Array, Analog, Discrete, Optoelectronics, Digital Bipolar. In addition, there is a five-page summary write-up providing the major assumptions behind the forecast and changes from the previous quarter.

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Save the Date: Sandeep Vij, President and CEO of MIPS, to Speak at Semico Summit 2011

Sandeep Vij
President and CEO, MIPS

Phoenix, Arizona December 2, 2010 - Semico Research Corp. is proud to announce that Sandeep Vij will speak at the Summit 2011. The Summit will be held May 1-3, 2011 at the stunning InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa in Paradise Valley, Arizona.

MCU Memory Trends: How Much and What Kind, 4Q 2009 Update

2009 was a rough year for most semiconductors, and MCUs were no exception. A major reason for the 2009 MCU sales decline was a sharp drop in overall average selling prices comounded with the severe drop in end-use demand, especially in the automotive market. The high rate of ASP decline was indicative of the tough economic conditions impacting the semiconductor industry:

• Chip vendors slashed prices in order to move product.
• OEMs reduced inventories, thus impacting the unit shipments.
• The supply chain and production pipeline were reduced considerably in 1H 2009.

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