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Cellular PA market to reach $4 billion in 2016 with the help of GaAs

The market for gallium arsenide-based PAs will continue to grow in more demanding applications and more sophisticated smartphones

The cellular power amplifier (PA) market grew 19 percent, to more than $3.3 billion in 2011, driven by the growth of cellular terminal shipments to an estimated 2.3 billion units. The Excel-based report, “Cellular PA Forecast 2012,” from the Strategy Analytics RF & Wireless Components (RFWC) service covers the market for PAs and PA-front-end modules in dollars and units through 2016. According to Christopher Taylor, Director, Strategy Analytics RF & Wireless Components, "Grey market (illegal, or shanzhai) handsets grew, as did smartphones, cellular-enabled notebooks, netbooks, tablets, USB dongles and M2M devices. The average number of bands and modes supported by cellular devices also grew, which slightly increased the average number of PAs per cellular device 2011.  Strategy Analytics expects the non-handset segments of this market to contribute more than 40 percent of the demand in 2016.” Eric Higham, Director of the Strategy Analytics GaAs and Compound Semiconductor market research service, added, “GaAs-based PAs make up about 95 percent of the market, however W-CDMA PAs fabricated in monolithic CMOS will capture a small but growing share in low-cost 3G devices over the next five years. Even so, the market for GaAs-based PAs will continue to grow in more demanding applications and in the form of complex modules for multiband smartphones.”

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