Takeshi Murata Hashimoto: New energy vehicles drive rising demand for MLCCs, and continuous innovation empowers industry applications
At the end of the year and the beginning of the new year, the "2024 Semiconductor Industry Outlook" special topic planned by Electronic Enthusiast Network received forward-looking views from executives of many domestic semiconductor innovation leaders. This time, Electronics Enthusiasts specially interviewed Takeshi Hashimoto, Vice President of the Marketing and Business Development Management Department of Murata (China) Investment Co., Ltd. The following is his analysis and outlook for the semiconductor market in 2024.
Picture: Takeshi Hashimoto, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development Management Department of Murata (China) Investment Co., Ltd.
Looking back on 2023, the semiconductor and electronic components industry is still in the downstream cycle and experiencing a slow destocking process. The complex and ever-changing external market environment has also brought more opportunities and challenges to the electronic components industry to a certain extent.
Murata believes that the destocking of smartphones has basically reached normal levels in the first half of 2023, and will continue to develop steadily thereafter; in the automotive mobile market, with the increase in the number of EV units, the demand for related electronic components has also increased accordingly; PC In terms of the server market, although the recovery process is still relatively slow, some new demands such as AI servers are further increasing. We also look forward to seeing the terminal market gradually recover in 2024.
Hashimoto Takeshi said that in the medium to long term, the continuous development of high-speed communication technologies such as 5G and 6G will inevitably bring about a sharp increase in the amount of communication data, thus driving up the demand for data centers. In the automotive market, the trend of electrification and electrification of automobiles is unstoppable, and autonomous driving technologies such as ADAS are also developing continuously, which will inevitably lead to a further increase in demand for electronic components in the future. This provides more new application scenarios for the components and semiconductor industry, and will continue to drive continued growth in industry demand.
Although the market is still likely to fluctuate in the short term, it is also crucial to continue to focus on these markets that can foresee future developments. In this regard, Murata has targeted four main application areas, namely core areas focusing on communications and mobile and emerging areas focusing on environment + industry and health, in line with the development trend of the Chinese market and further providing customers with high-quality products and solutions. plan.
2023 marks the 50th anniversary of Murata’s entry into China. Over the past 50 years, Murata, as an "innovator in the electronics industry", has adhered to customer-centric long-termism and formulated a long-term vision goal for 2030, which is to become the world's leading supplier of components and modules. In the future, Murata will continue to provide local customers with higher quality and more reliable products and help customers meet technical challenges.
Murata believes that the number of new energy vehicles worldwide will further grow in 2024, and driving safety technologies related to autonomous driving will also continue to develop, which is undoubtedly a huge development opportunity for the electronic components industry. For example, the number of MLCCs installed in traditional oil vehicles is roughly 3,000, while EVs require more than 10,000, which shows that there is a huge demand for electronic components.
In addition, application scenarios that are closely related to automobile safety, such as power systems and ADAS, have very high requirements for high reliability of components. This is also one of Murata's strengths: continuously and stably providing high-quality and high-reliability products. . Especially for power systems, components need to withstand high voltages and have extremely high safety and reliability requirements. In addition to providing high-quality MLCCs, Murata also expects the demand for film capacitors with high heat resistance to further increase. With the development of autonomous driving, higher requirements are placed on sensor accuracy, and the demand for high-precision sensors such as MEMS sensors will also continue to develop. In addition, Murata will further use its accumulated experience and technology in the field of communications to help upgrade and iterate the in-vehicle information system.
Customers in the automotive market have high requirements for product breadth and safety. In terms of quality, the development and production measures of automotive MLCC products should aim at "zero defects" to meet the long service life of the product. Murata understands the market changes brought about by CASE. With its ultra-thin, ultra-small, high-capacity and high-reliability MLCC product series, it meets the changing needs of customers and provides win-win solutions, which have been adopted by many customers at home and abroad.
In addition to automotive semiconductors, AI technology is accelerating its implementation in terminals and clouds. Murata said that the development of metaverse, digital twin, web3.0 and other technologies all need to rely on the development of AI technology, so the AI server market is bound to grow. AI servers require approximately several GPUs and CPUs, so compared with ordinary servers, the scale and technical difficulty are increased. Component products that help data centers achieve high efficiency and low energy consumption are also particularly important.
At the same time, Murata believes that communication networks will become necessary infrastructure in the future era of the Internet of Everything, such as the communication between cars and traffic lights and other infrastructure during the autonomous driving process of intelligent transportation systems, and the use of sensors and communication equipment to monitor the operating status of machines in smart factories. Monitoring and preventive maintenance in advance, remote consultation in smart medical care, etc.
As the public's awareness of health management gradually increases, in addition to the gradual evolution of treatment methods toward intelligent connectivity and remoteness, wearable health devices will also develop toward personalization, convenience, and precision. This will also put forward higher requirements for the safety and miniaturization of sensors for vital sign monitoring and communication module products for data transmission.
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