Industrial Ethernet is growing faster than before and now accounts for 38 percent of the market, according to a report from HMS Industrial Networks. EtherNet/IP is in first place within industrial Ethernet globally, followed by PROFINET. However, classic fieldbuses are still dominating the fragmented world of industrial networks with 58 percent, but PROFIBUS is still the most widely used industrial network.
The Internet of Things is also driving wireless technologies, which are now on the chart for the first time.
Fieldbus vs. Industrial Ethernet and Wireless
HMS’s estimation for 2016 is based on the number of newly installed nodes in 2015 within Factory Automation. The estimation is based on several market studies and HMS’s own sales statistics. As an independent supplier of products and services for industrial communication and the Internet of Things, HMS has insight into the industrial network market. Here are some of the trends they see within industrial communication for 2016.
- Fieldbus is still growing. Looking at newly installed nodes within factory automation globally, fieldbuses are still the most widely used type of networks with 58 percent of the market. Fieldbuses are still growing by approximately seven percent per year as users ask for simplicity, tradition and reliability. The dominant fieldbus is PROFIBUS (17 percent of the total world market including industrial Ethernet) followed by Modbus (seven percent), and CC-Link (six percent).
- Industrial Ethernet is growing faster than before. According to HMS, industrial Ethernet is growing faster than previous years and taking more market share. At a growth rate of 20 percent, Ethernet now makes up 38 percent of the global market, compared to 34 percent last year. EtherNet/IP is the number one Ethernet network with nine percent, followed by PROFINET (eight percent). Runners-up are EtherCAT, Modbus-TCP and Ethernet POWERLINK.
- Wireless is coming. For the first time, wireless technologies are on the chart with four percent of the worldwide industrial network market. WLAN is most popular, followed by Bluetooth. “We see the Internet of Things as a big driver for wireless technologies,” says Anders Hansson. “Wireless opens up for new automation architectures and is increasingly being considered for machine connectivity and control, including Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) solutions via tablets or smartphones.”
In Europe and the Middle East, PROFIBUS is the leading network while PROFINET has the fastest growth rate. Runners up are EtherCAT, Modbus-TCP and POWERLINK. The U.S. market is dominated by the CIP networks where EtherNet/IP is overtaking DeviceNet in terms of market shares.
In Asia, no network stands out as truly market-leading – PROFIBUS, PROFINET, Ethernet/IP, Modbus and CC-Link are widely used. EtherCAT continues to establish itself as a significant network, and there are early signs of CC-Link IE Field being adopted.
“The presented figures represent our consolidated view, taking into account insights from colleagues in the industry, our own sales statistics and overall perception of the market,” says Anders Hansson. “It is interesting to see that industrial Ethernet is now growing faster and that wireless technologies are gaining foothold.
"What is completely clear, however, is that the network market remains fragmented as customers continue to ask for connectivity to fieldbus, industrial Ethernet as well as wireless networks. All in all, industrial devices are getting increasingly connected, boosted by trends such as Industrial Internet of Things and Industry 4.0.”