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  • Published on: 7th September 2019
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Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Inspection Equipment Market

Market Definition

Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Inspection Equipment Market is highly competitive and highly in demand. The force which drives the global market of Surface Mount Technology (SMT) Inspection Equipment are due to the continuous giant inventions of new products and  their production speed capacity. The increased demand in the electronic consumer appliances sectors such as telecommunication and the devices such as mobile phones, LED lighting, LCD televisions and refrigerators had increased the competitions among the SMT market. The need for the highly effective and light weight electronic devices which can serve the medical and automobile field had added the fuel for the demand of SMT Inspection Equipment in the latest market trend.  The growth of the defense sector had raised their needs for the defense electronic equipment which had increased the demand of the SMT Inspection Equipment.  In the last few years SMT) Inspection Equipment is significantly in demand due to its high precision and improved high efficiency.

Market Definition by Segment Type

The demand of the SMT Equipment Market is segmented on the basis of product, geographical location and revenue source.

The product segment includes the below mentioned classification;

• Screen print equipment such as manual, automatic and semiautomatic

• Soldering equipment such as wave oven, reflow oven and curing oven

• Placement equipment such as  high speed, low speed and medium speed inspection equipment such as laser, optical, manual X-ray, semi and automatic X-ray equipment

• Cleaning equipment such as series stencil cleaning, ultrasonic stencil cleaning

• Repair and rework equipment such as manual repair and rework equipment, semiautomatic repair and rework equipment.

   The geographical location segments are categorized into four regions such as

• North America which includes U.S ,Canada and Mexico

• Europe which includes U.K, Germany and France

• Asia – Pacific (APAC) which includes China, Japan and rest of APAC

• Rest of the world (ROW)  includes Latin America, Middle East and Africa

    The Revenue source segment includes the following such as

• Telecommunication sector

• Consumer electronic appliances

•  Automobile industry

•  Emery and power systems

•  Medical instrumentation

•  Aerospace and Defense sector

Key Factors Driving the Market Growth

Following are the major factors driving the market growth:

Increased demand for the electronic products

The SMT market technology is expected to grow at the highest rate due to the increased demand in the consumer electronics products. The electronic devices such as laptop, mobiles, Televisions, GPS navigation systems and many more had evolved due to the revolutionary inventions and development of microelectronics. The SMT equipments provide high precision and highly improved effective products which creates a demand among the electronic industry. It meets end to end requirement of the people which helps them in buying the electronic goods. As the product requirement of the people continues to grow then the demand for the SMT Inspection Equipment will be always in a peak. The application of SMT in the consumer electronics industry continues to grow in the forecast period.

Proliferation of smaller components

The SMT technology is driven by the computing, telecommunication and consumer appliances which consist of the efficiency of Printed Circuit Boards (PCBs). All the modern electronic devices widely use the IC chip technology which consists of the vital components called the PCBs. Initially the PCB boards were assembled using the ‘through-hole-technology’ but today the trend had lead to the size reduction of boards. SMT plays a vital role in making a simplified PCB assembly operation that involves the process of PCB assembly by mounting the passive and active components onto the PCBs surface directly. This proliferation of smaller components had led to the increase in demand of the SMT Inspection Equipment.

Increase in investments from contract manufacturers

SMT TECHNOLOGY is witnessing a new goal of opportunities due to the active participation of the contract manufactures involved in investing more capital to increase the manufacture of SMT inspection equipment. Due to high level of investment the quality of the SMT technology products consists of innovation, speed, flexibility and improved accuracy of placing components. The competition of the global market is increased due to the multiplication of investors. The capitals for the manufacturing of the SMT inspection equipments are increased which results in faster PCBs assembly process, increased manufacturing of good quality products and reliable electronics. The contract manufacturers drives the increased price competitions due to squeezed profits and the control on capital investment which simultaneously increased the improvement of in the performance and price ratio of the machines by the equipment manufactures.

Focus on manufacturing flexibility and product complexity

Introduction of SMT technology had made the electronics manufactures face an evolutionary and high dynamic and demanding environment. The most important key factor in the manufacturing process is the flexibility. The scheduling of flexible production and the versatile material handling increases the demand for the SMT inspection equipment. The demand of the product is based on the predefined quality level consistency. The widespread usage of the SMT technology is due to low rate of detects per unit and high rate of first pass acceptance of the product. The product complexity is increased when the number of package types on the same board increases. Thus both manufacturing flexibility and product complexity go hand in hand in increasing demand for the SMT inspection equipment technology.

Emerging opportunities in the medical and robotic industry

The growth of the engineering sectors had increased the demand for the SMT inspection equipment technology. The high demand for flexible and reliable environment for the medical device market encourages the demand for highly advanced machine which is achieved by the SMT technology. The equipment by the medical industry for purposes such as the remote patients monitoring and the incorporation of wireless technology in the medical facilities and hospitals increased the demand for the SMT technology. The advancement of industrial robots and the performance of each robot are achieved by the SMT inspection equipment technology. The high precision and accuracy are the basic requirement of the engineering industry which simultaneously increases the demand of the SMT technology in the global markets.

Key Factors Inhibiting the Market Growth

Following are the major factors inhibiting the market growth:

Long lasting product lifecycle

SMT inspection equipment is providing a very high performance delivery and a long lasting lifecycle. This stops the customers from purchasing new equipments. The customers demand products and services that have high level of availability and process certainty. This had led to the invention of the innovative products which offers relatively long lifecycle. They last for a longer duration which can be ten years or longer. The product development involves reduced operating costs for customers with more efficient production process. Though the long lasting capability of the product gives trust and ensures security to the customers, it also inhibits the small level market growth.

Increased sales of refurbished and used SMT equipment

Since the last few years the sale of refurbished and used SMT equipment has grown significantly which is a major challenge to the SMT new equipment market. The demand for the refurbished and used SMT equipment is equal to the demand of the new SMT equipment in the competitive market. Due to the increased revenues of the used equipment had led to huge cancellation of orders and excess inventory in the new equipment sale market. The huge reduction in the cost of the cell phones, laptops and many other electronic products is forcing the manufactures to utilize the used or refurbished equipment which help them to reduce the production cost and increase the demand for their electronic products. China is the hot market for the refurbished and used SMT equipment and this is the reason why all the china electronic products are sold at a very cheap rate.

Increase in AOI technology

The AOI technology is increasing its demand due to its capacity of detecting the faults at the early stage in the production process. The major problem of the SMT inspection equipment is that it is very hard to detect the faults in the soldering joints. The quality of the products is in high concern and this can be achieved through AOI technology which helps in producing high volume and high quality products. It is brought to the market very reliable, very quickly and these fast methods increase the demand for the AOI technology. Automated optical inspection systems can detect early problems by placing it in the production lines which is just after the soldering process. This rapid response of the AOI technology is a threat to the SMT technology.

High cost of advanced SMT equipment

The SMT inspection equipment is expensive and it forces the buyers to plan carefully and make choices in purchasing the new equipment. The demand for the low cost electronic products drives the attention of the electronic products manufactures to reduce the production cost. This is achieved only when they invest low on the inspection equipments. The cost of the SMT inspection equipment inhibits the growth in the competitive market.

Too many competitors had lead to declined sales

Competitions can increase the production from year to year but the huge production can also lead to decreased sales. Competitive markets are occupied with numerous competitors who sell both new equipments and also used and refurbished equipments. This increased competition is a great hindrance for the growth of SMT technology. The buyers are expecting high quality machinery which is cost effective and last for long duration. There is a fluctuation in the price due to increased competitors in the SMT technology market. The equipment with reduced cost and high efficiency are achieved even by the refurbished SMT inspection equipment which equally stands as a competitor and inhibits the growth of the new SMT inspection equipment.

Major Trends

Growth of strong electronic manufacturing and services industry

Communications, consumer, and computer products will continuously supporting the largest growth and the leading segment of the electronics industry. The worldwide Electronics Assembly Market had reported that the total electronic industry is expected to reach a value of $1.4 trillion annually in the replacement and consumption of the electronic products which fuels the demand in the SMT market.

The electronic manufacturing sector is booming due to the following factors such as Innovative products, high quality, cost effective and increased orders. This can be achieved only by the advanced equipments and highly reliable PCB components. The demand for the electronic devices drives the demand for the market of the SMT technology.

Increased production in the PCBS Spurs sales

The introduction of new and more complex PCB assembly operations and component packaging technologies which includes ball grid arrays is increasing the demand for the technically sophisticated inspection systems such as manual, semi and automatic X-ray inspection systems.

The flip chips and the chip sale-packages are at a higher resolution demanding which also spurs the growth of open-tube X-ray systems. The need of the end users in the electronic manufacturing industry has to be satisfied in order to reach a great success in the future. The challenging technology such as SMT is the major trend which increases the demand of the electronic products.

Need for complex PCB assemblies are met by miniaturized electronic assemblies

The large batch production and the miniaturization of electronic assemblies of various components can be met only by a quick pick and place machines which are highly efficient and this will create a high demand for the SMT inspection equipment. The complex and the reduced components of the PCB assemblies increase the speed and delivers high efficiency.

The PCB’s are significantly used in all the modern electronic devices. Earlier the PCB components were mounted on the PCB board using the through-hole technology. The need for complex PCB assemblies is effectively met by the miniaturization trend by which the PCB boards are reduced in size through the SMT equipment. The simplified PCB assembly operations increase the demand for the surface mount technology (SMT) equipment.

Demand for SMT inspection equipment due to the focus on defect prevention products

The defect prevention products are highly in demand because it proves the quality of the product and also provides a good value for the money spent on it. The high precision and accuracy is followed in the SMT equipment which helps to reduce the technical issues and the defects of the product.

The need to reduce the wastage from the manufacturing defects and improved manufacturing process had led to the introduction and development of SMT equipments. The zero percentage of defects per unit of the products is achieved through the implementation of the SMT. The need for higher accuracy of the semiconductors active components such as diodes, transistors and passive components such as resistors, capacitors increases the demand of the SMT inspection equipment.

Growth of LED technology had increased the demand of SMT inspection equipment

The trend for the green technology has increased the production opportunities for the LED technology. The electronic industry has received benefit from the reduced size and lower power consumption LED. The global LED manufacturers are experiencing an increasing demand due to its cost effectiveness, high brightness and power effective capacity.

 The LED technology fuels the demand for the SMT equipment. The global SMT equipment market is expected to reach $ 5.3 by 2016 which is driven by the electronic industry, up gradation of older product lines and new innovations of the product. The latest technology of LED emerges new opportunities for new technical applications, and reduced cost which increases the demand and the growth of the SMT equipment market.

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