The key markets served by embedded computer boards, modules and systems span military, medical, gaming, transportation, and industrial automation. Embedded computing controls ground, air and sea-based military applications, railroads and factories, and provides critical functionality to scientific and medical equipment.
While many of these markets grow at a modest pace year-on-year, the impact of the growth in Internet of Things (IOT) applications has the potential to grow certain parts of the embedded computing market at a much more radical pace. In particular, it is the industrial IOT (IIOT) applications which appear to offer the greatest potential. The industrial automation market segment has been deploying automation for decades but IIoT is different in certain respects. The main distinctions are the extensive use of sensors and actuators, the advanced analytics employed, and the adoption of IT methodologies.
IHS Markit predict that IOT innovation will be a key driver of the embedded computing market over the next five years and that new wireless technologies will push IoT into new applications. While 2016 global revenues have shrunk 3.1% ($81 million) from 2015 levels to $2,513 million, the forecast to 2021 of $3,427 million is based largely on the growth of the industrial automation sector. The report contains a full commentary by board type with accompanying data file.