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Synaptics pushes its fingerprint sensor technology into new markets


Synaptics projected its total addressable market will expand from smartphones and tablets into new growth areas like automotive and gaming peripherals to see a significant leap from $2.7 billion in 2014 to $10.1 billion in 2018, according to a report by Investors.com.

Synaptics hopes to realize these ambitious goals by integrating touchscreen technology and display drivers into a single offering, with its first touch-display driver integration product slated for next year.

The company acquired Renesas SP Drivers in September, therefore making the converged offering possible.

Synaptics is also pushing fingerprint sensor technology which it gained from its acquisition of Validity Sensors last November, selling fingerprint sensors as a security feature for a range of devices.

The fingerprint sensor business is still in its early growth stages. But with the recent inclusion of a fingerprint sensor in the Apple iPhone 5S, fingerprint sensor shipments are expected to double next year, said Feltl analyst Jeffrey Schreiner.

Currently, Synaptics provides fingerprint sensors for various high-end Samsung smartphones, such as the Galaxy S5.

Sterne Agee analyst Vijay Rakesh believes that Synaptics should be able to lead the smartphone market share with its touch-display driver integration.

Additionally, the automotive market is a long-term opportunity for Synaptics as the company looks to break into the market with new applications such as in the infotainment center and doors and windows mechanical button replacement, said Rakesh.

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