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LED notebook market ramping quickly

The proliferation of notebook PCs backlit with LEDs will deliver annual revenues of $800 million to chip makers next year.

The proliferation of notebook PCs backlit with LEDs will deliver annual revenues of $800 million to chip makers next year.

That s according to Jamie Fox, a market analyst at UK-based IMS research, who describes the ramp as "explosive".

"Dell has already publicly committed to using LEDs in all [of its] notebooks by 2010, and other manufacturers are also committed to a surge in LED notebook backlighting in 2009 and 2010," reckons Fox.

Worth around $200 million last year, Fox is expecting exponential growth in 2009 and 2010, as the market for LEDs in notebooks doubles year-on-year.

Featuring in around 10 per cent of all notebooks made in 2008, he also predicts that market penetration will approach 50 per cent by 2010.

Fox estimates that notebooks typically require between 60 and 70 LED chips.

Because LCD televisions are much larger, and also typically plugged into the mains rather than battery-powered, the TV market is adopting solid-state lighting technology at a much slower rate.

Fox also suggests that there have been technical difficulties incorporating LEDs into TV backlights, where picture quality is paramount.

However, with companies such as Samsung now enthusiastically marketing the benefits of the technology, Fox admits that the first half of 2009 has seen renewed optimism for LED-lit TVs.

The one down side, as far as the analyst is concerned, is that the market for LEDs used in notebook PCs will saturate rapidly after the next two or three years of explosive growth.

At that point, revenues from TV applications and, increasingly, general lighting, ought to be ramping up quickly.

The World Market for LEDs - 2009 Edition and The World Market for LED Driver ICs - 2009 Edition are available now from IMS Research.

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