5 Key Trends for Embedded Systems in 2019

Microprocessor with overlaid graphic representing advanced technologies

Embedded systems are on the rise as the technology paves the way for the future of smart manufacturing across a range of industries. Microcontrollers — the hardware at the center of embedded systems — are improving quickly, allowing for better machine control and monitoring. In this article, we will discuss the emerging trends for embedded systems in 2019 that will enable enhanced security, better control, and improved scalability.

Current Trends in Embedded Systems Applications

An embedded system is an application-specific system designed with a combination of hardware and software to meet real-time constraints. The key characteristics of embedded industrial systems include speed, security, size, and power. The major trends in the embedded systems market revolve around the improvement of these characteristics.

To give context into how large the embedded systems industry is, here are a few statistics:

  • The global market for the embedded systems industry was valued at $68.9 billion in 2017 and is expected to rise to $105.7 billion by the end of 2025.
  • 40% of the industrial share for embedded systems market is shared by the top 10 vendors.
  • In 2015, embedded hardware contributed to 93% of the market share and it is expected to dominate the market over embedded software in the upcoming years as well.

Future Trends of Embedded Systems Industry

The industry for embedded systems is growing and there are still several barriers that must be overcome. Below are five notable trends of the embedded systems market for 2019.

Improved Security for Embedded Devices

With the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT), the primary focus of developers and manufacturers is on security. In 2019, advanced technologies for embedded security will emerge as key generators for identifying devices in an IoT network, and as microcontroller security solutions that isolate security operations from normal operations.

Cloud Connectivity and Mesh Networking

Getting embedded industrial systems connected to the internet and cloud can take weeks and months in the traditional development cycle. Consequently, cloud connectivity tools will be an important future market for embedded systems. These tools are designed to simplify the process of connecting embedded systems with cloud-based services by reducing the underlying hardware complexities.

A similar yet innovative market for low-energy IoT device developers is Bluetooth mesh networks. These solutions can be used for seamless connectivity of nearby devices while reducing energy consumption and costs.

Reduced Energy Consumption

A key challenge for developers is the optimization of battery-powered devices for low power consumption and maximum uptime. Several solutions are under development for monitoring and reducing the energy consumption of embedded devices that we can expect to see in 2019. These include energy monitors and visualizations that can help developers fine-tune their embedded systems, and advanced Bluetooth and Wi-Fi modules that consume less power at the hardware layer.

Visualization Tools with Real Time Data

Developers currently lack tools for monitoring and visualizing their embedded industrial systems in real time. The industry is working on real-time visualization tools that will give software engineers the ability to review embedded software execution. These tools will enable developers to keep a check on key metrics such as raw or processed sensor data and event-based context switches for tracking the performance of embedded systems.

Deep Learning Applications

Deep learning represents a rich, yet unexplored embedded systems market that has a range of applications from image processing to audio analysis. Even though developers are primarily focused on security and cloud connectivity right now, deep learning and artificial intelligence concepts will soon emerge as a trend in embedded systems.

Current and Future Innovation of Embedded Systems

The industrial sector for embedded systems is undergoing numerous transformations that will enable developers to build systems that are high-performing, secure, and robust. As a developer and manufacturer in this industry, it is important to stay updated with the latest technologies and trends. For 2019, the embedded systems market is shaping up for simplified cloud connectivity, improved security tools, real-time visualizations, lower power consumption, and deep learning solutions.


Image credit: Dmitriy Rybin / Shutterstock.com

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