The recently published IHS report, The World Market for I/O Modules - 2015 indicates that the global I/O market grew a little in 2013, compared to the decline in 2012.
The Americas was the strongest regional market for I/O modules in 2013, driven by its relatively stable economic situation and strong growth in the process sectors.
The Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) I/O market grew in 2013 after a decrease in 2012, even though its programmable logic controller (PLC) market dropped during the year. Growth in the process sectors was stable, and was especially strong in regions other than Western Europe. The appreciation of the euro against the US dollar (USD) was also a factor contributing to the growth when presented in USD.
The market in the Asia-Pacific region barely grew in 2013. Slight growth in distributed control system (DCS) I/Os failed to offset the fall in PLC I/Os. Major economic powers like China and India were still striving for recovery, with economic restructuring and weak demand in local and export markets.
The Japanese market dropped again in 2013. A stagnant world economy-especially the underperformance in Asia-had a great effect on Japan, which depends heavily on exports. Moreover, a sharp depreciation of the Japanese yen also contributed to the drop in Japan's market for I/O modules measured in USD.
The PLC market did not perform well in 2013, which affected PLC I/Os. Although the control system market did not grow much, demands from expansions and replacements were able to drive some expansion in the market for I/O modules.
The DCS market recovered in 2013 after a downturn in 2012, which helped drive the growth in the market for DCS I/Os. Growth in DCS I/Os was mainly propelled by the installed base rather than by new installations. Strong growth in oil and gas and associated industries also helped propel the expansion. However, the recent drop of oil prices, if sustained, is expected to harm investment in the oil sector.
Given the faster growth in industrial PC (IPC) markets, the PC-based I/O market grew faster than other segments. It was forecast to grow faster as well. However, its share will remain much smaller than those of PLC and DCS I/Os.