16- and 32-bit microcontrollers to outsell 8-bit microcontrollers by 100%

The bulk of revenue in the microcontroller market is moving from 8-bit microcontrollers to the higher 16-bit and 32-bit bit devices, reports In-Stat. By the end of 2009, the combined revenue from 16-bit and 32-bit microcontrollers will reach approximately twice the revenue expected from 8-bit MCUs. Although the bulk of unit and revenue upsides for microcontrollers will result from increased demand for higher performance devices, 8-bit microcontrollers will continue to lead in unit shipments over the combined group of 16-bit and 32-bit microcontrollers. Unit demand in the 16-bit MCU category is dominated by three applications: smart cards, PC peripherals and hard disk drives. Together, the three applications comprise over 40% of total units shipments. The greatest CAGRs come from control and instrumentation, MP3 players and digital camera applications. Unit volumes in the 32-bit MCU space are also dominated by smart cards; however, unit CAGR growth is coming from different applications such as digital wireless, PC DVDs, barcode readers, and security.