Chip market poised for 'rebound' in 2012

After several years of sluggish sales, the semiconductor industry is on the verge of a rebound, according to market research firm Gartner.

Gartner on Tuesday reported that worldwide semiconductor revenue is expected to reach $316 billion this year, a 4% increase from 2011. The new numbers are a marked improvement from Gartner's last forecast. In the fourth quarter of last year, analysts predicted a 2.2% increase for 2012.

"The is poised for a rebound starting in the second quarter of 2012," said Bryan Lewis, research vice president at Gartner, in a statement. "The inventory correction is expected to conclude this quarter, foundry utilization rates are bottoming, and the economic outlook is stabilizing."

Gartner is predicting growth in several sectors of the market.

PC unit production in 2012, for instance, is projected to grow 4.7%, and semiconductor revenue from PCs will hit $57.8 billion, according to Gartner. Mobile phone unit production is expected to grow 6.7% with semiconductor revenue for mobile phones totaling $57.2 billion in 2012.

Gartner also noted that production is expected to increase a whopping 78% over last year, and semiconductor revenue is expected to reach $9.5 billion in 2012.