The machine vision market is poised to experience strong growth and high levels of innovation in 2019 coming off of a record-setting year in 2018. In terms of market growth, 2018 proved to be an explosive year, seeing 17% growth in Q1 and Q2 over 2017 during the same time period.
While year end growth in 2018 was lower than most projections at 7%, this level of growth was still a record for the industry. Growth was primarily driven by sales of machine vision cameras, smart cameras, and application-specific machine vision (ASMV) technologies. Undeniably, 2018 was one of the strongest years yet for the machine vision market, and now 2019 is shaping up to be just as strong.
The Industrial Market for 2019
The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) believes the economy and all manufacturing sectors will continue to grow throughout 2019. It explains that new orders, production and employment are all projected to grow. Supplier deliveries are slowing at a slower rate than previous years and backlogs will continue to grow. Raw materials inventories are increasing while customers’ inventories are too low. Prices are stabilizing while exports and imports are growing.
All of these factors combined paint a picture of a robust industrial sector in 2019, which leads the AIA to forecast slightly slower, but still strong, machine vision market growth around 3 to 5% for 2019.
Machine Vision Growth Drivers in 2019
One of the primary drivers of growth in 2019 will be the continued adoption of Industry 4.0 technologies. For smart, connected manufacturing, businesses need a wealth of production data. Often, this data comes from machine vision cameras on the factory floor, either set up to collect valuable product data or embedded within production machines.
In addition to the adoption of Industry 4.0 technology, the marketplace will be changing, driving further growth. There will be more suppliers, creating more choices and more decisions for manufacturers. Traditional machine vision suppliers are being disrupted by new players in the market who are experience fewer barriers to entry, especially for components like cameras, lighting, optics/filters, and even embedded computers.
The machine vision industry, coming off a record-breaking 2018, will see strong growth throughout 2019, partially driven by a strong economy and industrial sector, and partially driven by major changes occurring within the industry.
To learn more on this topic, take a deeper dive with our free, archived webinar, “A Year in Focus - What Will 2019 Bring for Vision & Imaging.”