Growth sectors

An overview of sectors using printed electronics

More and more industries are putting their trust in printed electronics. The technology has already been making significant inroads into large-scale industries, such as automotive and consumer electronics. The sector has tremendous potential for further growth.

LOPEC showcases the entire printed electronics value chain: from research and development to the implementation of new applications and their marketing strategies. The event explores this process across a vast array of sectors. An increasing number of users are coming to value the benefits offered by printed electronics.

The market for organic and printed electronic products had a turnover of up to 24 billion dollar in 2014, the majority of which came from OLED displays. In the upcoming years, annual growth rates of up to approx. 20 percent are being predicted for the printed electronics market across all sectors. Printed electronics is therefore an industry with a very bright future.

The following large-scale industrial fields now use printed electronics and continue to launch an ever-growing range of printed electronic products on the market:

Icon automotive industry

Automotive industry

Printed antennas, integrated occupancy sensors, automatic anti-dazzle rear view mirror, curved OLED displays, OLED lighting, ambient lighting, touch-sensors in surfaces

Icon lighting


OLEDs for designer luminaires, electroluminescence for ambient lighting

Icon printing and graphics

Printing and graphics

Smart gift cards, interactive surfaces (displays, PV, batteries), effective advertising on packaging thanks to the use of printed optical elements

Icon energy


OPV, printed energy storage, batteries

Icon buildings and architecture

Buildings and architecture

Decorative, building-integrated organic photovoltaics, electrochromic glass

Icon logistics


Smart Labels and RFID-Labels in warehousing e.g., smart food packaging that allows continuous tracking of the cold chain or theft protection

Icon medicine and pharmaceuticals

Medicine and pharmaceuticals

Pharmaceuticals: glucose test strips, smart blister packaging/interactive medication packaging (for controlled dosing of medication) or flexible electrodes e.g., for ECG

Icon textiles


Safety clothing, clothing with integrated functionality (sensors, heating elements, batteries, lighting elements, etc.), bags and rucksacks with OPV so users can charge smartphones on the go, sportswear, medical/therapeutic applications (incl. temperature, movement, heart/breathing rate sensors).

Icon consumer electronics

Consumer electronics

Flexible displays and OLEDs for e-reader, smartphones, tablets and watches; touch-sensors

Icon packaging


Interactive surfaces (displays, OPV, batteries, LEDs), packaging with electroluminescence, theft/fraud protection, smart labels, interactive packaging, which can link to data networks via NFC labels

Icon white goods

White goods

Touch displays/operating surfaces for household devices

With the implementation of new technological applications and the integration of further components, e.g., sensors, organic photovoltaics, and communications elements, the number of sectors using printed electronics in a large number of products is set to grow.

Printed electronics market

Total printed electronics market (covering products like membrane switches, RFID antennas, and connective circuitry, along with products like display, lighting and photovoltaics): revenues of USD 5.64 billion in 2010, growing to UDSD 26.9 billion in 2016—a year-on-year growth of 31.8 percent. It will grow USD 43 billion in 2020, and will continue at a rate of 13.9 percent.

Source: Smithers Apex