Introduction to Flexible Printed Circuit Board
Flexible printed circuit boards (FPCBs), also known as flexible or flex circuits, are an assembly of pattern of conductive traces mounted on a flexible substrate, such as polyimide or polyether ether ketone (PEEK). Flex circuits are used where circuit is bent once or a few times during package or assembly and where, there is a need for continuous flexing. They are extensively used in electronics owing to their excellent flexibility, light weight, and reduced thickness. They eliminate the need for some components such as, connectors, wire harnesses and are usually found in high performance devices, including GPS, smart phones, tablets, and cameras. They have replaced hand-built wire harnesses in many applications.
A number of basic material elements constitute a flex circuit consisting of metallic layer of traces bonded to a dielectric layer along with a conductor. The most common metal used as a conductor in a flex circuit is copper; however, other conductive materials are also used. It also consists of a protective finish (cover coat) and adhesives to bond all the materials. Together, all these materials form a basic flexible circuit. They are manufactured either by photolithographic technology or by laminating very thin copper strips in between two layers of Polyethylene terephthalate (PET).
Market Size and Forecast
The market is showing a significant growth on account of requirement for complex electrical and mechanical interfaces. Additionally, properties, such as lightweight, simple structure, compact design and economical nature are estimated to propel the growth of the market. Moreover, reliability and flexibility when compared to conventional boards are also projected to positively impact the growth of the market. Furthermore, increase in demand and production of consumer electronics along with utilization of FPCBs for efficient interconnection between electronic components are also anticipated to foster the growth of the market.
The global flexible printed circuit board market is anticipated to record a CAGR of 11.9% over the forecast period i.e. 2019-2027. The market is segmented by product type into single-sided, double-sided, multilayer and rigid flex circuits, out of which, the multilayer flex circuit segment is anticipated to have leading shares in the global flexible printed circuit board market on account of its superior resilience and high efficiency. Based on application, the market is segmented into automotive, instrumentation, medical devices, defense and aerospace, consumer electronics, and others, out of which, the consumer electronics segment is expected to generate highest revenue during the forecast period owing to rise in demand for consumer electronics. CLICK TO DOWNLOAD FREE SAMPLE
Growing Demand for Compact and Flexible Electronic Products
Multiple systems in a rigid board occupy more space and add more weight. Flex circuits are made from thin dielectric substrate and high ductility metal foil which makes them compact and flexible in nature to meet the requirement for smaller and higher density mounting design. Thus, miniaturization and pliability of the flex circuits over conventional rigid boards are some of the significant characteristics that are anticipated to foster the growth of the market.
Increased System Reliability
Most circuit failures occur at interconnection point. Flex circuits reduce the interconnection points, thereby making it more reliable to use. They also reduce the total cost involved in complex wiring and provide interconnectivity solutions. Additionally, flex circuits can only fit in one way, therefore, they eliminate wire routing errors that result in saving testing time.
High Initial Cost
The initial cost of circuit layout and design for flexible printed circuit boards is higher as compared to rigid PCBs that are less expensive. This factor might hamper the growth of the market over the forecast period.
Our-in depth analysis of the global flexible printed circuit board market includes the following segments:
By Product Type
On the basis of regional analysis, the global flexible printed circuit board market is segmented into five major regions including North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America and Middle East & Africa region.
The market in Asia Pacific is anticipated to show a notable growth over the forecast period on the back of large-scale investments in flexible printed circuit board manufacturing technology in this region. China, India and Japan are expected to be the major countries in the Asia market for flexible printed circuit boards on the back of rising demand for electronic products in these countries.
The market in Asia Pacific is estimated to be followed by North America and Europe on the back of growing demand for wireless devices and requirement for more efficient interconnections and flexible circuits.
The global flexible printed circuit board market is further classified on the basis of region as follows:
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