R. Colin Johnson, EETimes
10/7/2014 06:05 PM EDT
PORTLAND, Ore. -- The integration of sensors and sensor hubs into everything from smartphones to aerospace -- and the resultant plethora of MEMS/sensor startups and rock-bottom commodity pricing -- can make one wonder why any company would resort to the major research and development (R&D) effort to design its own sensors, much less commit to manufacturing them in-house or even at foundries. However, after interviewing the companies and analysts, EE Times uncovered a variety of good reasons for brewing your own sensors and sensor hubs.
Some companies just covet vertical integration, especially in Asia, where Omron Corp. makes everything in its popular blood pressure cuff, from the LCD display to the pressure sensor inside. Many Japanese companies are so vertically integrated that they even own their own banks to gain favorable loan rates and easy money for starting up ventures. Its not hard to understand why these companies make their own sensors -- verticalization is in their blood.
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