IC sockets have been used for many years for different, evolving reasons. Since sockets add to material costs, no one would use them unless they had a good reason – or are basically following a standard operating procedure that has worked for previous generations.
With the advent of modern digital circuitry and increasing importance of mobile electronics, socket use has waned somewhat. In recent years, this is also due to advances in surface mount technology, mated height restrictions, lower procurement and system assembly cost versus socketing.
Then, why would anyone socket? A number of reasons apply and include:
- Costly and somewhat fragile, ICs can be spared the heat and mechanical stresses associated with automated circuit board assembly.
- Sockets can be ‘quarantined’ in special theft-proof lockers, catalogued for specific circuit board use, and installed by trained technicians.
- Sockets can even be installed at final system configuration and test, so as to further insure their proper use and potentially avoid tariffs or duties imposed by foreign governments.
Bishop & Associates research report, IC Socket Market – System and Connector Forecast – 2016 – 2023 examines these reasons and others. This report discusses why IC sockets are still being used and, in some applications, are growing. The report looks at current IC socket applications and examines present and future factors which are anticipated to change the way we develop, market, procure and utilize IC sockets.