FPGAs are expected to have many applications in automotive, consumer electronics, medical, and computing & data center verticals. Telecommunication, industrial, and aerospace & defense are currently, the top three markets for the application of FPGAs. FPGAs have many advantages such as fast time-to-market, low non-recurring expenses (NRE), simple design cycle, predictable project cycle, field re-programmability, and fast & efficient processing; they are suitable for time-critical applications and massively parallel data processing among others. These factors are expected to drive the FPGA market.
Major challenges faced by the market include the lack of standardized verification techniques and the inability of FPGAs to substitute ASIC devices. The functional reliability on register-transfer level (RTL) designs is one of the major challenges for FPGAs, for which verification techniques are required. Verification mainly depends on the debugging component. Reducing the development cycle of FPGAs has led to the need for verification techniques.
This sector contributes significantly to the economy of most of the countries and includes both wired and wireless communication; 3G and 4G LTE services are widely being adopted throughout the world, mostly in North America and Asia-Pacific. Moreover, the number of Internet users has increased even in the rural areas. These advancements have increased the number of network infrastructure providers and mobile network operators. These operators require more bandwidth and high speed of data or download speed to fulfill the needs of customers.
High-end FPGAs held the largest market share in 2015 and this is expected to continue during the forecast period. This type of FPGA has more number of applications than the other two types– mid-end and low-end FPGAs. Some of the sectors in which high-end FPGAs are employed are computer storage, medical, military, networking, telecom, test & measurement, and wireless technologies.
The major companies in the FPGA market include Xilinx Inc. (U.S.), Altera Corporation (U.S.), Microsemi Corporation (U.S.), Lattice Semiconductor (U.S.), Atmel Corporation (U.S.), and Achronix Semiconductor Corp (U.S.) among others.