- Software helps identify problems before a circuit is built
- Consumer electronics and automotive are the largest markets
- Software manufacturers partner to create component library
Globally, PCB design software was valued at $4.7 billion in 2016, according to a report by Future Market Insight Global and Consulting Pvt. Between 2016 and 2026, the market is forecasted to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.9%.
PCB design software is used by engineers for designing printed circuit boards. When integrated with other software, engineers can better understand layout and design.
Growth in the market is fueled by a need to eliminate problems associated with product develop and a need to reduce time spent on design. PCB design software allows engineers to test real- world applications for circuits and identify issues before they occur.
Market growth faces a significant challenge. In many nations, including the U.S., Russia and China pirated software is common. This forces companies to lower their software prices in order to compete.
Consumer Electronics and Automotive
Growth in the PCB designed software market is fueled by primarily by the consumer electronics and automotive sectors, its largest end users.
By 2020, consumer electronics are forecasted to reach $3 trillion in revenue, according to Embedded Computing Design. This market contributes 29% of the PCB design software market and is valued at $400 million globally.
The rising popularity of smart wearable devices and smartphones is behind the growth.
The automotive sector accounted for $228.5 million in revenue last year, largely because of smart cars.
Other uses of the software include the defense and the medical industries.
In 2015, the top PCB design software market globally was the United States. Revenue was $433 million.
By 2020, however, China is expected to be a large market, contributing 55% of the world’s computer chip supply.
India also is a growing market as the consumer electronics market grows.
Zuken, SamacSys Partnership
German software and consulting firm Zuken has partnered with American software tool developer SamacSys to develop a free components library of high-quality PCB symbols and footprints.
The library will contain more than 7 million components that engineers can download.
“Today engineers spend a large amount of their design time on component related activities,” Alex MacDougall, managing director at SamacSys, said in a press release. “With new technologies and market shifts such as IoT [Internet of Things], it is increasingly important to be able to develop new products more efficiently to maintain a competitive edge, and this is where the SamacSys PCB Part Library solution can help.”
- Errors are reduced using features such as auto-tuning, auto-routing and auto-placement in PCB design software. This makes PCB fabrication easier.
- Free PCB design software is available online that offers a variety of features.
- Top companies in the PCB design software market include ANSYS, Cadence Design Systems, Mentor Graphics Corp., and Zuken.