Global Microcontrollers Industry Trends – November 2022 Update

Global Microcontrollers Industry Trends – November 2022 Update



The technological gadgets we use every day are built with electrical and digital circuitry circuits which can be created utilising a variety of technologies, including vacuum tubes, transistors, integrated circuits (ICs), microprocessors, and microcontrollers. Discrete electrical and electronic parts, integrated circuits, microprocessors, and microcontrollers can be used to implement these technologies. 


This has brought in a focused accessibility of the products with decreasing product price, which was made possible by the industry’s escalating competitiveness in order to significantly boost demand for microcontrollers. 


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The demand for the creation of new goods and solutions is driven by the rise in the trend of working with automated machinery and equipment, the expansion of electronic products, and technological advancements. By implementing touch-sensing capabilities in designs, numerous industry verticals including vehicles, cell phones, and healthcare support the growth of the microcontroller sector. 


This exponential growth can be seen in the development scale of microcontrollers across the globe with major focus being upon diversification of usability, which is evident in the most recently tested and launched STM32 family of microcontrollers.


These have been predicated on ARM Cortex-M computer cores designed to meet the high performance demands of peripherals including USB OTG, Ethernet, and CAN controllers, Serial Audio Interfaces (SAI), Camera interface, TFT LCD interfaces, and hardware graphics accelerators.




With the rapid advancements and innovations seen in the automotive industry and the growing trend of working with automated machinery and equipment, microcontrollers are being primarily used in devices that require a significant amount of user control, which is leading to an exponential rise in the range of electronic products and technology advancement. Following are the few key product launches of sensors in the global market across sectors:

S. No. Company Product Product Stage and Timeline Remarks
1 Texas Instruments MSP430 Mixed Signal Microcontroller Developed and Launched  – 2022 The architecture is optimised to provide longer battery life in portable measuring applications with low-power modes.
2 WCH Electronics RISC-V Microcontroller Chip Developed and Launched – 2022 Low Cost RISC-V microcontroller chip capable of operating at up to 48MHz
3 Microchip Inc. SAMA5 Arm Cortex Developed and Launched – 2022 Designed for applications including barcode scanners, printers, secure IoT gateways, networking, and POS terminals.
4 Microchip Inc. ESP32 Integrated Microcontroller Developed and Launched – 2022 The ESP32 is an upgraded version of the ESP8266, a low-power, low-cost microcontroller with Bluetooth and WiFi built into its chip.
5 STMicroelectronics Ultra High-Performance STM32H7 Developed and Launched – 2022 Benchmark performance of more than 1,000 DMIPS and clocked at up to 480 MHz



Vacuum tubes were used in the early days to create embedded system devices, which made them much larger and more expensive. Since transistors are smaller, more cost-effective, function more quickly, are reliable, and use very little power, their use has consequently led to smaller circuit sizes.


Discrete circuits are those built with transistors and other discrete electronic components. As a result, IC technology made circuits smaller than those made using discrete components. 


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By substituting a single microcontroller IC for numerous integrated circuits in a circuit, improved microcontroller IC technology reduces the size of circuits.


This technological edge of combining multiple requirements could be seen in the trending ESP32 microcontroller which has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi built right into its chip. It is an improved version of the ESP8266 that is less expensive and uses less power. The ESP32 family includes switches and antennas built-in at its heart.


Given the increasing complexity of vehicles and the ability to apply AI, the ecosystem has received a lot of attention in order to guarantee quick time-to-market and usability. Carbon-free, autonomous, totally networked, and cyber-secure transportation will be the norm in the future.


The fundamental element of this transition is microelectronics. This could be evidently seen in the recently launched AURIX microcontroller family.


The advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), automotive electric-electronic (E/E) designs, and cost-effective artificial intelligence (AI) applications are all supported by the TC4x series.



  • Automotive Microcontrollers Trends

Microcontrollers are capable of a wide range of applications in automobiles and may be used to do so easily and affordably because they are mostly used for control and communication activities.


Small 8 or 16-bit microcontrollers (MCUs) are utilised in modern vehicles for a variety of purposes, including controlling the windshield wipers and position sensors. Microcontroller families are created specifically for the automobile industry due to the wide range of uses for microcontrollers. 


The most important demand for automotive microcontroller families today, which obviously differentiates from consumer device or communication applications, is probably technical security, which is seen to be the transformative technology of adoption.


This technical security capability can be noticed across the recent innovation by Infineon technologies with focus on development of automated driving as well as e-mobility. It provides improved connectivity in addition to cutting-edge security and safety with new Software over the Air technologies.


  • Consumer electronics Microcontrollers Trends

In addition to functional efficiency, consumers increasingly demand their appliances and devices to be smarter and more connected. Consumer electronics are evolving into smart electronics, including utilities, home entertainment systems, and kitchen appliances. Entities across the globe have started making use of its design and development skills to support this revolutionary transition.


Chips for ANT/ANT+ connecting devices, high-end microprocessors, advanced microcontrollers, media processors, and Bluetooth and wireless electronic peripheral ULP technologies are all contributing to the advancement of consumer electronics’ functional capabilities. 


These technological interfaces utilization can be seen in the recently developed and launched Infineon technologies PSoCTM 6 family based on an ultra-low-power architecture, and the MCUs have low-power design features to increase battery life for battery-operated applications by up to a full week. The Arm Cortex-M4 and Cortex-M0+ architecture’s dual core allows for simultaneous power and performance optimization.


  • Medical Devices Microcontrollers Trends

The long-term growing industry in the medical sector for semiconductor suppliers is stable due to factors including ageing populations, an increase in homecare, and political repercussions related to cutting healthcare spending.


These Microcontrollers (MCUs) are important components in many portable medical instrumentation equipment, including heart rate monitors, spirometers, pulse oximeters, and portable blood pressure monitors.


Since the majority of these devices use analogue signals, electronic control techniques like amplification and filtering are required before the physiological signals may be measured, monitored, or presented.


This monitoring capabilities being focused with multiple observational requirements are the major trend, which can be noticed across the PIC18-Q40 family with low pin count, large flash memory, small footprint packaging, and flexible analogue and digital CIPs to the product line for portable and small-footprint applications.


They have CIPs with connecting capabilities, which provide quick system responses, precise control, flexible design, and reduced power usage.


  • Aerospace and Defence Microcontrollers Trends

With growing emphasis on Aerospace and Defence manufacturing requirements across the globe, the Arm processors have subtly entered the military/aerospace sector in recent times.


It is not surprising that Arm’s possibility was recognised in a sector where size, weight, as well as power (SWaP) involves preventing heavily influencing innovation selection. 


Arm has a well-established reputation in commercial markets for bringing high performance to low-power mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and wearables which could be seen across In-vehicle microcontrollers from Renesas have a record of accomplishment of success that demand higher performance and dependability.


The floating-point operating unit for engine control is incorporated in Renesas’ high-reliability microcontrollers R5F72544RKBGV#US and R5F72533KFPU#US, which were created for the automobile sector and used in the aerospace business.


  • Industrial and Machineries Microcontrollers Trends

In the past ten or two years, technology has grown to such a degree that it has improved the comfort and efficiency of living. The MCU has seen a significant evolution over the past few decades, driven by the growth of edge devices.


The next generation of intelligent apps will need a new class of MCUs that enable developers to navigate a complicated terrain of power, performance, and security requirements, even though they are at the core of many of today’s edge applications. 


This can be seen across the new microcontrollers from the MCX range are intended to accelerate innovation in smart cities, factories, homes, and other growing industrial and IoT edge applications. The MCUXpresso suite of development tools and software, which is extensively used, supports the portfolio, which consists of four series of devices developed on a similar platform.



  • 8 Bit Microcontroller Trends

By continuing to innovate in a number of areas, including as memory, power consumption, packaging, and core-independent peripherals, 8-bit MCUs are able to continue to survive (CIPs).


With today’s cutting-edge chip building technology, this becomes a possibility in a single SoC device. New generations of MCUs integrate an increasing quantity of memory, if necessary, to accommodate the expanding need for code space. Another aspect of the application cost, often overlooked in the design phase, is the maintenance cost of millions of devices. 


Reliability and device durability can be improved through code simplification and hardware instead of requiring software redundancies. These could be noticed across the PIC16F15254 8-Bit Microcontroller from Microchip Technology has a necessary peripheral set that includes important Core Independent Peripherals (CIPs), Intelligent Analog, and common communication modules. The upgraded mid-range core of these microcontrollers has 49 instructions and 16 stack layers.


  • 16 Bit Microcontroller Trends

Even while 8-bit microcontrollers are becoming more potent, their capability in terms of processing speed and addressable memory is still constrained by their inherent design.


As a result, 8-bit is not used in applications with higher performance. Systems with 32-bit cores, on the other hand, are frequently overkill for the application, especially when they use more power than is required. With 16-bit microcontrollers, the ideal compromise between 8-bit and 32-bit cores, the problem can be solved. 


As demonstrated by the PIC24FJ1024GA, a 32-megahertz (MHz), 16-bit microcontroller with 1 Mbyte of on-board Flash and 32 Kbytes of on-board SRAM, they offer the low power of a straightforward single-supply 8-bit microcontroller while providing some of the performance and memory advantages of 32-bit cores. It employs a basic programming model, like many others.


  • 32 Bit Microcontroller Trends

The 32 bit MCUs give in an adherence to clean and stable voltage to highlight the growing demands of high bit microcontrollers. There is relatively little room for variation because they normally operate at 3.3V or 1.8V.


Analog and digital supply rails need to be properly separated in the power delivery network, which must be carefully constructed. To prevent unpredictable supply voltage from interfering with the microcontroller’s operation, ground separation and return path considerations are also crucial. 


Unpredictable behaviour might result from noise injected into the voltage supply line, such as erroneous ADC readings or the MCU resetting at random. With mass acceptance in the embedded sector and significant backing from software firms, the ARM microcontroller (MCU) architecture has emerged as the de facto standard for 32-bit microcontrollers.


It is now simpler than ever to migrate code from one 32-bit microcontroller to another considering the accessibility enabled by Silicon Labs to the standardisation of ARM microcontroller cores.



The information has been sourced from our report titled “Global Semiconductor Industry Quarterly Update”. Download free sample to know more

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