Maxim Integrated Products CEO Tunc Doluca announced that the company will exit the consumer MEMS space during a recent earnings call to discuss the company'sfinancial results for the second quarter of its 2015 financial year.
This is the end of Maxim’s third and last attempt to enter the consumer MEMS business. Maxim had its own BAW filter development in the years 2006-2008 out of its Oregon facility. Then it started RF MEMS switches in development from 2007-2009 in Dallas. Since its own MEMS programs did not pay off, Maxim instead opted to buy a $164 million entry ticket into MEMS in 2011 with the acquisition of SensorDynamics and by hiring a full MEMS motion sensors designer team from a competitor in Europe.
IHS always doubted Maxim would ever get a return on this investment. Mid of 2011 at the moment of the acquisition IHS predicted already in its Consumer and Mobile MEMS market tracker that the “fat years” for consumer MEMS would end in 2013 because of the combination of a fierce price erosion and a saturation of the smartphones and tablets markets. It was clear that newcomers in consumer MEMS such as Maxim and Fairchild would have a very short time window to establish themselves against ST, Bosch and InvenSense. IHS believe that Maxim was counting on a design in a flagship model of Samsung in 2014 or early 2015 to propel itself in consumer MEMS arena. Maxim was not selected in the end and this probably was a reason to exit this market.
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