Radio Frequency (RF) is a frequency associated with radio waves, within the electromagnetic spectrum. On application of RF current to specialized antennas, an electromagnetic field is generated, which then leads to generation of RF waves. This waves travel through the surrounding media, which might be air or water. Several electronic devices are based on propagation of radio frequency waves. Radio frequency waves are widely used for telecommunications. Applications in video broadcasting, radio communications and satellite communications are generally achieved by utilization of RF electronic components. Additionally, RF energy is also used for several industrial and healthcare applications. RF test equipments are primarily utilized for testing of RF components and RF electronics, to ensure their proper functionality. RF testing is done to ensure that a device is able to function properly under an electromagnetic environment, and should not be emitting intolerable electromagnetic radiations to the environment. Thus RF test equipment basically checks equipment for immunity to RF waves and field strengths among others.
The market for RF test equipment is primarily driven by the intense growth of telecommunications sector. Current telecommunication systems are primarily based on wireless connectivity, done through wide range of radio frequencies. Such frequencies are transmitted and received through various RF enabled electronic devices. With the growing demand for connectivity, demand for RF enabled devices has been growing at a tremendous pace. This in turn has been promoting the demand for RF test equipment market. Additionally, the growing demand for internet connected and RF enabled consumer electronics, such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops, televisions and microwave ovens among others have also been promoting the growth of the RF enabled components. This in turn has been further promoting the growth of RF testing equipments. Furthermore, growing application of various communication technologies, across different industry verticals, has been promoting the growth of RF enabled electronic components. This again has been positively impacting the growth of RF test equipment market. However, growing strictness of regulations for radio frequencies, coupled with growing number of bandwidths, has led to the need for advanced RF testing equipments. Lack of such advanced equipments has been restraining the growth of RF testing equipments to some extent. Considering the growing application of RF enabled electronics, the market for RF test equipments can be expected to grow at a significant pace, during the forecast period from 2017 – 2025.
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On the basis of architecture, the market for RF test equipment has been segmented into hardware, software and services. Hardware has been further segmented into spectrum analyzers, signal generators, network analyzers, and others. Spectrum analyzer segment is one of the largest segment and has been growing at a fast pace. The segment is expected to maintain its fast growth pace, during the forecast period. On the basis of frequency, the market is segmented into four segments. They are up to 1 gigahertz (GHz), above 1 GHz – 2.1 GHz, Above 2.1 GHz and others. Others segment covers RF testing equipments which has testing capabilities across a wide range, such as 100 kilo Hertz (KHz) to 4.4 GHz etc. By end use industry, the market has been segmented into aerospace & defense, automotive, information and communication technology (ICT), consumer electronics, research and others. The global market for RF test equipments, by region, has been segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific (APAC), South America and Middle-East & Africa (MEA). North America and Asia Pacific occupied large market shares in 2016, owing to growth in manufacture of RF devices in these regions, coupled with growing applications across different industry verticals.
The major companies of the RF test equipment market globally are Tektronix, Inc. (The U.S.), Agilent Technologies (The U.S.), Rohde & Schwarz GmbH & Co. KG (Germany), Anritsu Corporation (Japan), TestEquity, LLC (The U.S.) and National Instruments Corporation (The U.S.) among various other companies.