12 Most Advanced Countries in Electronics

In this article, we take a look at the 12 most advanced countries in electronics. You can skip our detailed analysis of the electronics industry and go straight to 5 Most Advanced Countries in Electronics

Electronics encompasses one of the broadest ranges of products in the modern world, from TVs, computers, music players, smartphones, tablets and watches among many others. It has been one of the most transformative industries in the world for the past 50 years.

How Moore’s Law Will Impact the Electronics Industry?

Currently, the latest chips are made on the 5 nm fabrication process and companies like Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Limited (NYSE:TSMC) and Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (KSE:005930.KS) have set up their timelines for 2 nm chips in 2025. However, experts predict that a fundamental limit would be reached in two or three upcoming iterations. 

Many believe quantum computing is the answer to Moore’s law ending. However, it's an ill-informed opinion since quantum computers are limited to a very narrow range of computing problems, almost all of which have no commercial potential.

Instead, companies like Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) have come up with some of the most realistic solutions, by moving to specialized chips intended for specific purposes. 

For instance, Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) has introduced DGX Systems, with the objective to accelerate machine learning programs, at a higher efficiency than offered by general purpose computers. 

The future of electronics that compute is likely to lie in specialized chips. It is reflected in the fact that Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) have also moved in that direction, with Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) coming up with task-specific processors like Xeon, an architecture designed for AI. 

Similarly, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has been rolling out ‘Neural Engine’ since 2017 in its iPhones to accelerate AI applications like facial recognition. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) introduced the neural engine in its line of computers with the M1 chip architecture in 2020. 

The trend suggests that the electronics industry will survive the ending of Moore’s law and adapt to the paradigm shift. 

When the Chips are Down: What Semiconductor Shortage and Stagflation Mean for Electronics Industry

The outlook for the electronics industry in the wake of chip shortage is bleak. It is not expected to subside anytime soon.  Pat Gelsinger, the CEO of Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC), says shortage may last until 2024,

However, a more reasonable timeframe for the shortage to end is 2025, per Ondrej Burkacky from McKinsey, primarily due to the complexities associated with the manufacturing infrastructure. 

The post-pandemic stagflation has also slumped the high demand in consumer electronics, which had picked up pace during the pandemic, as people learned, worked and entertained themselves digitally at homes during lockdowns. The weak demand is expected to ease the supply-chains problems and shortage. 

Companies like Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA), Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) have cut their annual-sales outlooks as reported by the WSJ.

In China, the sales of both smartphones and PCs, among other electronic products, have dropped, with the Consumer Electronics Index down by 32% as of July, 2022.  Globally, the shipment of PCs and smartphones have fallen by 4.7% and 10% respectively. 

2030 Outlook

The market for consumer electronics has been showing a long-term cooling trend and is expected to shift from growth to cycle in the near to medium term. However, according to Yang Liuqing, an analyst at CITIC, the opportunities in Augmented and Virtual Reality hardware still represent a huge potential for growth.

According to Precedence Research, the market for electronics is valued at $724.48 billion as of 2021 and is expected to reach $1.13 trillion by 2030, growing at a modest CAGR of 5.1%

The market will experience its fastest growth in countries in the Asia-Pacific, but the largest market share will still be retained by countries in North America, per the report. 

Japan, South Korea and the US are some of the most advanced countries in electronics. Below, we list the 12 most advanced countries in electronics. 

12 Most Advanced Countries in Electronics
12 Most Advanced Countries in Electronics

Our Methodology

For our list of the 12 most advanced countries in electronics, we’ve ranked them based on their electronics-manufacturing infrastructure, technology and research institutes. For this purpose, we’ve gathered data from various sources, including an FDI Intelligence report that evaluated countries’ locations for the quality of R&D in electronics based on infrastructure, talent availability and business environment.

We’ve also accounted for the top electronics companies in these countries. 

Here are the 12 most advanced countries in electronics:

12. Finland

Finland is known for a strong and innovative electronics industry. One of the most well-known Finnish companies in the sector is Nokia Oyj (NYSE:NOK), which is a global leader in the development and production of mobile phones and other telecommunications equipment. 

Other notable Finnish electronics companies include Vaisala, a provider of environmental and industrial measurement systems and Elisa, a telecommunications and digital services provider.

In addition, Finland also has a strong ecosystem of R&D and academic institutions that are focused on advancing the field of electronics. 

For example, the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology (HIIT) is a leading research institute that conducts research on a wide range of topics related to information and communication technology.

11. United Kingdom

The UK is home to a thriving electronics industry. In terms of innovation in electronics, the United Kingdom is known for the company ARM Holdings, which has pioneered the ARM family of chips. Their RISC (Reduced Instruction Set Computer) architecture makes them simpler, more durable and more cost effective.  

In September, 2020, Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) announced its plans to acquire ARM Holdings from SoftBank Group Corp. (TOKYO:9984.T) for $40 billion. The deal was later terminated due to regulatory challenges. 

As far as the UK's electronics-R&D is concerned, its infrastructure in the country is robust. The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) is a UK government agency that supports research in engineering and physical sciences, including electronics.

London is ranked 10th top city by FDI Intelligence for quality of research and development in electronics, with a high score of 145.

10. France

France is one of the most advanced countries in electronics. The top companies in the French electronics industry include Thales, a notable name in the defense and security sectors. 

The company produces a wide range of electronics-based products. Schneider Electric, an energy management and automation-solutions provider, is another major French company.

Valeo, a manufacturer of automotive components and systems, including electronic systems, is another major electronics company in the country.

Further, France has a well established R&D ecosystem in the electronics sector. For instance, the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) is a leading research organization involved in electronics research.

Paris grabs the ninth top spot in the FDI Intelligence report on top locations for quality R&D in electronics, with a high score of 158.

9. Turkey

Turkey is located at the intersection of Europe and Asia. It is one of the highly advanced nations in electronics, especially when it comes to drone-electronics.

Some of the key companies in the Turkish electronics industry include Vestel, a manufacturer of consumer electronics and home appliances; Özgün Makina, a provider of automation and control systems; and Arçelik, a leading manufacturer of home appliances and consumer electronics.

The government agency called Turkish Scientific and Technical Research Council is also greatly involved in investing in electronics-R&D. With a high score of 163, Istanbul is considered the eighth best place for quality research in electronics, according to the FDI Intelligence report.

8. Germany

Germany is the biggest economy in Europe. The technological products and services contribute significantly to Germany's overall wealth. In 2019, the EU leader was responsible for 6% of the global output in Knowledge-and-Technology-Intensive (KTI) industries. 

Electronics is one of Germany's top tech sectors. The country has leading electronics companies, including Siemens, Bosch, and Phoenix Contact, which are involved in a wide range of activities, from the development of semiconductors and circuit boards to the production of consumer electronics and industrial automation systems. 

Germany is also home to a number of research institutions and universities that are actively involved in cutting-edge research in electronics, including the Technical University of Munich, the University of Karlsruhe, and the University of Stuttgart.

Figures from 2019 show electronics comprised $58 billion of Germany’s total exports, expressing a YoY increase of nearly 6%. China was the biggest buyer of German electronics in the year, making up $5.4 billion worth of purchases. The fastest growing market for German electronics was the US, with exports to the country increasing by 12.7%.

7. China

China is one of the most advanced Asian countries in electronics. Shenzhen is considered the best Chinese city by FDI Intelligence for high quality research & development in electronics, followed by Guangzhou, Shanghai and Beijing. 

In fact, Shenzhen is ranked as the third best place in the world in terms of electronics-talent and infrastructure, with a very high score of 217. 

Some of its top electronics companies like Huawei Technologies and Xiaomi Corporation (HKSE:1810.HK) are globally competitive for their products. In 2021, China’s export of circuit components alone was worth $140 billion. 

In addition to native companies, China is also one of the top go-to places for companies like Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA), Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) and Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) for the production and assembly of its products. 

6. Singapore

Singapore is an island nation located in Southeast Asia. It is one of the most advanced countries in electronics, since it is one of the biggest industries in the country, contributing 8% to Singapore’s GDP. The industry also takes up 20% of the manufacturing jobs in the country, according to official government figures. 

It is a powerhouse when it comes to chip making, with eight out of ten fabless chip companies, 21 wafer fabrication units and two of the world’s leading three foundries located in Singapore. 

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Disclosure: none. 12 Most Advanced Countries in Electronics is originally published on Insider Monkey.