Manufacturing - Endeavor Business Media
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Manufacturing - Endeavor Business Media


The Pulse of the Semiconductor Market

Semiconductor companies mobilized quickly during the pandemic to respond to the surge in demand for chip-based products and solutions that power our hyper-connected society. To gain insight into the state of the semiconductor industry post-pandemic, Dell Technologies fielded The Pulse of the Semiconductor Market Study, which posed a series of survey questions to Electronic Design users centered on engineering disciplines, tools, designs, storage and more.

This study explores how engineers are using innovative technology to reduce semiconductor time-to-market, how semiconductor companies manage cybersecurity threats, and ultimately paints an overall view of the industry—where it shines, what it lacks, and what the future holds.

About the Survey Respondents

Base: All respondents; (n = 470).

Company Size/Employees

10,001 to 20,000
Don't know

Company Size/Annual Revenue

Less than $10 million
$10 million to $100 million
$100 million to $1 billion
$1 billion and above
Don't know

Job Function

Design Engineering
Engineering Management
Corporate Management

Design Tool Trends

With increased focus on Internet of Things(IoT)/Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), more engineers are updating or creating new integrated circuits (ICs) that can handle the dynamic connected platforms with greater compatibility and efficiency. The demand for connected devices continues to grow, and with that comes increased complexity in their designs, which is often prevalent when scaling to smaller, faster chips.

Employing Electronic Design Automation, or EDA, can streamline the process from schematic to fabrication and help with bottleneck and scalability issues based on input parameters of the IC design and available materials. Another way for semiconductor companies to quickly get new ICs to market is through design reuse, or building on an existing design to bring added functionality, increased power efficiency, and better heat management.

38% percent of respondents reported they reused designs between 20% and 40% of the time, while another 31% indicated reusing designs between 40% and 60% of the time.

Less than 20%
of the time
Less than 20% of the time
Between 20% and 40% of the time
Between 40% and 60% of the time
Between 60% and 80% of the time
Over 80%
of the time
Over 80% of the time

Data Storage Trends

$527.2 billion

Global semiconductor revenue expected in 2021.


Of semiconductor firms surveyed archive data continually through the design process, making it easy to perform upgrades to designs when needed or to flesh out bugs that might arise over the years.

Moore’s Law

Has given rise to more complex IC designs, and with the design growth comes increased storage needs in both capacity and performance.


Of survey respondents named time-consuming and repetitive manual processes as extremely challenging (9%), very challenging (24%), or challenging (35%) aspect of storing and managing data.

Migrating to the Cloud

The cloud is a vast network of remote servers around the globe that are linked together and operate as a single ecosystem. These servers are designed to store and manage data, run applications and deliver content or services.


There is no one-size-fits-all cloud solution when it comes to the semiconductor industry; users can choose from three types of cloud platforms—private, public, and hybrid:

Cloud Platforms


  • Run on the company’s infrastructure
  • Are usually firewalled and physically secure from outside access
  • Provides significant financial benefits
  • Must be supported, managed and upgraded when they reach their hosting limit


  • Run as-a-service, alleviating the responsibility and management of data storage
  • Companies/individuals pay to host their data
  • Can get expensive depending on the amount of information, egress costs and its management
  • Security is handled by both parties; subscribers are required to ensure their data sets and applications are secure


  • Mixed computing, storage and service environment
  • Created by using on-premises infrastructure, private cloud services and a public cloud
  • Brings increase security for proprietary data that’s stored privately
  • Grants access to readily available information deemed noncritical
  • Designed for companies that need to adapt to changing workloads, separating critical and noncritical information, big data processing, and more
56% of survey respondents reported some level of migration of design workloads to the cloud, but 41% indicated they are not planning to move workloads to the cloud.

Security Issues and Fears

Security is a crucial factor for any storage medium, whether it is local or stored in the cloud, as the fear of hacking or data compromise is a real-world contention and global threat.


of survey respondents state cybersecurity protection is the most important attribute for semiconductor design storage, including safeguards against ransomware, data destruction or deletion, and DoS (Denial of Service) attacks.


of companies surveyed have a DR (Disaster Recovery) plan, which requires a local data center and remote site to restore lost or corrupted information, in place such an event occur.

Only 37%

Only 37%

of study participants reported their company had a ransomware protection plan for design data.

Predicted Future Trends

Learn more about future trends in semiconductor design and manufacturing.
Innovation in design tools and infrastructure is expected to play a leading role as consumers continue to increase demand for the latest mobile devices, IoT/IIoT applications, autonomous vehicles and more. Key challenges will also play a major role in the advancement of the semiconductor industry, including time-to-market, as some product launches fail to meet their launch dates. Costs are another factor as supply chains continue to stagnate, and prices for materials and labor continue to surge. How companies will mitigate those issues and leverage current technologies will ultimately drive future innovation within the semiconductor industry.
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Additional Resources

The Pulse of the Semiconductor Market Study Report
The Pulse of the Semiconductor Market Study Report is a detailed report based on a comprehensive research study performed in collaboration between Dell and Electronic Design. The report provides detailed analysis of the state of the market, with some indications of where the industry is headed in the future.
Download the Market ReportOpens in a new window.
The Pulse of the Semiconductor Market Infographic

This infographic provides highlights of the in-depth 'The Pulse of the Semiconductor Market' research study, conducted in collaboration between Dell and Electronic Design. The data are presented in attention-getting, attractive ways to help readers get the most of the report.


Download the InfographicOpens in a new window.
How to Get New Chip Designs to Market Faster and Reduce Cost
This webcast will provide a holistic view of electronic design infrastructure and explore how the right infrastructure can help you to better leverage resources, reduce operational costs and accommodate additional workloads, all while improving performance. We will also explore innovations in tools like virtual platforms and digital twin technology.
Watch the 18-Minute WebcastOpens in a new window.