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Capacitive fingerprint sensors have hit their peak, IHS Markit reports


According to market insight by IHS Markit Principal Analyst, LEDs, Jamie Fox, unit shipments of capacitive fingerprint sensors in consumer devices peaked in 2018, even though prices declined more than 40 percent compared to 2017. The overall price for a packaged fingerprint sensor in 2018 was $1.20, $1.10 for capacitive fingerprint sensors, and $5.80 for in-display. And prices fell under $1 for mass-market mobile phone applications by the end of the year.

Fox forecasts that in-display sensors will comprise a more sizeable share of the market from 2019 onward and will be a mixture of optical and ultrasonic sensors, with the majority likely to be optical sensors due to their lower price. Uncertainty still remains on the ratio of optical to ultrasonic sensors.

The use of sensors in mobile phones and notebooks is growing although shipments of fingerprint sensors for media tablets are forecast to decline, due to Apple’s adoption of Face ID, sluggish demand from other manufacturers and declining tablet shipments. The auto industry, industrial IoT, smart cards and other market segments did not add any significant volume in 2018.

Fox says Goodix was the capacitive fingerprint sensor market leader in 2018, shipping the most capacitive and optical sensors, as well as the most in-display sensors. Qualcomm accounted for almost all ultrasonic sensor shipments at the end of the year.

Fingerprint Cards ranked second this year, followed by Synaptics and Egistec.

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