The survey at the Southern Electronics and Manufacturing exhibitions showed that 21 percent of UK electronics companies identified electric vehicle (EV) related growth as the single largest driver, followed by IoT at 14 percent. A further 9 percent of companies expected growth to come from AI and 4 percent from the 3D printing and medical sectors. The other 48 percent of companies surveyed underlined the diverse spectrum of industries, from cleantech to oceanography.
The ban on selling new petrol, diesel or hybrid cars in the UK will be brought forward from 2040 to 2035 under the latest government plans. This is driving EV market growth, says Bytesnap, from vehicles to charging infrastructure.
The interest in IoT is understandable with the number of IoT connections in 12 key growth sectors, including consumer electronics, smart cities and intelligent buildings, predicted to grow from around 13 million in 2016 to over 150 million by 2024 in the UK.
The survey also identifed longevity s a key design factor. ByteSnap asked delegates about product longevity in the UK electronics, and found many of respondents are bucking a perceived short electronics lifecycle trend. Only 16 percent of companies surveyed reported their product lifecycles were two years or less, 4 percent reported lifecycles of two to five years, and 14 percent designed for lifecycles of over five years. The most interesting results were that 10 percent gave their product lifecycles as 5 to 10 years, and 45 percent as over 10 years. These figures were marked considering the pace of technological innovation electronics design companies must adapt to, and the ongoing issue of obsolescence.
This follows the European Commission’s Circular Economy Action Plan unveiled yesterday to create a ‘right to repair’ in Europe. The five-year blueprint outlines plans to move away from the wasteful take-make-use-dispose economic model towards a system with sustainable products, services and business models, minimising equipment designs that break too quickly and cannot be reused, repaired or recycled.