Gartner Blog Network

Bill Ray
Sr Director Analyst, Semiconductors & Electronics I
3 years at Gartner
32 years IT Industry

Bill Ray provides written research and inquiry support covering wireless connectivity, primarily for Product Managers and Tech CEOs. His researches focus on evolving standards for IoT connectivity and 5G services, and the semiconductors needed to support them.Read Full Bio

America holds semiconductor tech hostage against the rise of China

by Bill Ray  |  May 22, 2020

TSMC will have to play along with the US Department of Commerce if it’s going to maintain access to the US technology it needs to keep competitive. That means asking for a licence every time it takes an order from Huawei, and any other company that raises the ire of US authorities, despite the fact […]

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Another $10bn in semiconductor revenue disappears into Coronavirus-shaped hole

by Bill Ray  |  May 19, 2020

Updating our semiconductor forecast we’ve added 400,000 ventilators, five million pulse oximeters, and twenty-four million digital thermometers to the applications that will need semiconductor chips in 2020, but that’s not nearly enough to offset the smartphones and cars that people aren’t going to buy. We’re now forecasting that smartphone unit production will be down almost […]

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$55bn gone from chip revenues last year, and that was before Covid-19 hit

by Bill Ray  |  April 21, 2020

In 2019 revenue from semiconductors was down by 12%, compared to the previous year, proving that it’s not just Covid 19 causing the industry some serious grief. Most of the semiconductor industry had a pretty-poor time last year, with revenue down across the board. Intel regained the top spot, but only because Samsung depends more […]

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Covid-19 knocks $55bn off semiconductor revenue in 2020

by Bill Ray  |  March 30, 2020

At the end of 2019, when we published our last semiconductor forecast, Covid-19 hadn’t even been identified. Now we’re assuming a global recession, and reflecting that we’ve revised our prediction for 2020 revenue down by more than 11% – wiping $55bn from the revenue. With half the world in lockdown, and the other half heading […]

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Beating Moore’s Law by going faster than time?

by Bill Ray  |  March 11, 2020

We know that Moore’s Law can’t be maintained, stalled by the increasing cost of production – we can’t just make things smaller forever. So, various companies are looking for alternative approaches that might deliver comparable improvements in performance without breaking the bank. Notable amongst these is Tachyum, a semiconductor startup which is preparing to tape […]

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The coronavirus won’t infect semis, but it will make fewer people want them

by Bill Ray  |  February 17, 2020

The number of people with Covid-19, the current incarnation of the coronavirus, remains proportionally small. However, keeping it that way requires draconian controls over the movement of goods and people, and that will have a significant impact on demand for electronics, and (thus) the semiconductor industry. Enterprise demand won’t change much – orders might take […]

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Will semiconductors be taking a hit from the coronavirus?

by Bill Ray  |  January 31, 2020

As flights are grounded, cities locked down, and cruise ships put into quarantine it’s sometimes hard to focus on business as usual. However, the rest of the world continues to turn, and we have to consider how coronavirus will impact business, including our business. The disruption in manufacturing and supply chain, caused by measures intended […]

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India is poised to become a semiconductor design powerhouse

by Bill Ray  |  January 20, 2020

Government investment, and an entrepreneurial spirit, is turning India into a centre for semiconductor design. Investment from high-tech companies has created an educated workforce which is limited only by an institutional bias towards software investments. India’s software industry is well established, but hardware development is more nascent. For the last 20 years foreign semiconductor companies […]

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Semiconductors in 2019 – HiSilicon reaps the spoils of (trade) war with the US

by Bill Ray  |  January 7, 2020

In 2019 Intel regained the top spot amongst chip slingers, with last-year’s number one Samsung getting burnt by crashing memory prices, but real winner of 2019 was HiSilicon whose revenue jumped by almost 30% as American competitors were cut off from their biggest Chinese customer. Placing that customer (Huawei) on the US “Entity List” was […]

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Amazon pulls Alexa back from the edge with the promise of a comfortable cloud to live in

by Bill Ray  |  December 5, 2019

Amazon has slimmed-down the Alexa client into something that will fit onto an ARM Cortex “M” processor with only 1MB of RAM. That’s good for talking white goods, but it also means that most of Alexa will continue to reside in the Amazon cloud while Google’s Assistant heads out from the parental home. From the […]

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