Consumer Electronics

Technology is being bought by people no matter how expensive it is to make life easier. Most of the electronics today are portable, wearable, and even connected to the social world.

The electronic industry has employed a large number of engineers, designers, marketers, salespeople, customer service representatives, and finance experts to continuously improve the products of consumer electronics.

Consumer electronics or home electronics are electronic devices solely made for everyday use and in private houses. It includes equipment that is used for entertainment, communication, and home-office activities.

Miniaturization has made consumer electronics smaller and lighter. Consumer electronics has become a worldwide phenomenon, it has effectively influenced the economic status of an individual and small businesses.

Early in the 20th century, the first major consumer product was introduced, the broadcast receiver. In 2010, most of the consumer electronics have become linked to digital technologies, and have largely merged with the computer industry. It has now been called as the consumerization of information technology. The first set of consumer electronic products are radio receivers, television sets, MP3 players, video recorders, DVD players, digital cameras, camera recorders, personal computers, video game consoles, telephones and mobile phones.

While the consumer electronics has paved its way to the trend of merging on other products. A major characteristic of a consumer electronic product is the trend of increasing prices, which is driven by the efficiency and automation of the manufacturer, the low labor costs, and the improvements of the semiconductor designs. Nowadays, most of the electronic devices have internet connectivity.

As each year passes, and each new generation of products introduced in the marketplace, it has become difficult to categorize the electronic products into the traditional categories, such as telecommunications, computer hardware, and consumer electronics.

Most of the electronic consumers are built in China, due to the maintenance cost, availability of materials, quality, and speed. An embedded software is being utilized in some of the electronic devices. Electronics retailing monitors the sales of the consumer electronics, some of the consumer electronics retailer offer an extended warranty on some of the electronic products.

It is not a worry when consumer electronics have malfunctioned, it can be repaired through the electronic service maintenance of the product.

Consumer electronics has a great impact on our daily lives, however, it has also an impact on our environment and health. Energy consumption has increased from the production process of the devices to the household consumption. Even when the electronic device is turned off, standby power is still consumed, however, this can be reduced by unplugging the device or using power strips with switches.

Little did we also know that it has affected our health, some of the electronic devices produce major physical health concerns. With this, neck and back pains have increased which are commonly referred as repetitive strain injuries. Electronics have affected the lifestyle of people, obesity and diabetes are commonly evident to those who tend to use electronics the most.

Thus, use electronic devices moderately and efficiently.

Electronic Devices

Electronic devices are utilized for controlling the flow of electrical currents for the purpose of information processing and system control. Electronic materials are the type of materials which are typically used as core elements in a variety of device applications. Electronic devices are generally small devices and can be grouped together into packages called integrated circuits. This miniaturization is central to the great prosperity of modern electronics.

There are new and innovative materials, structures, process, and design technologies that are being explored for nanoelectronics, energy, environment, and biomedical applications. What are the best innovated electronic devices up to date?

Television

Through a television, you are able to receive news, sports, entertainment, information, and commercials. Have you ever thought about the technology that made this possible? How can a television decode the signals to produce the motion picture?

The old-style, a television with a cathode-ray tube receives the incoming signal and breaks it into its separate audio and video components. The audio part feeds into an audio circuit, which uses a loudspeaker to recreate the original sound recorded in the TV studio. Meanwhile, the video signal is sent to a separate circuit. This fires a beam of electrons that are fast-moving, negatively charged particles inside an atom, down a long cathode-ray tube. The modern televisions are called LCD (liquid-crystal display) televisions that have a million of tiny picture elements called pixels that can be switched on or off electronically to make a picture. Each pixel is made up of three smaller red, green, and blue sub-pixels. Since there is no cumbersome cathode-ray tube and phosphor screen, LCDs screens are much more compact and energy efficient than older TV receivers.

Cellphone

Mobile phones contain a large amount of circuitry, each of which is carefully designed to optimize the performance of the phone. The cell phone has an analog electronics and digital circuits that ranges from processors to display and keypad electronics. A mobile phone typically consists of a single board, but within this, there are a number of distinct functional areas that are designed to be integrated as one. Radio frequency receiver and transmitter, digital signal processor, analog and digital conversion, control processor, SIM card, and power control and battery are needed to assemble a cellphone.

Heart Monitors

A heart rate monitor is a personal monitoring device that can monitor a person to measure one’s heart rate in real time or record the heart rate.

Respiratory ventilators

A machine built to administer breathable air into and out of the lungs, to provide breathing for a patient who is physically unable to breathe, or has an insufficient breathing.

All of the above has been possible because of continuous efforts to improve the fundamental understanding of the electronic properties of various devices. This is complemented by the existing advancement in the process and fabrication technologies. The ever-changing dimensions and level of functionality require continuous efforts to develop state of the art materials to meet the technological challenges associated with the development of these devices.

Electronics: An Introduction

Electronics is the science that controls the electrical energy, wherein the electrons have a fundamental role. Electronics deals with the electrical circuits that involve active electrical components that are associated with passive elements like circuits. The science of electronics is considered to be a branch of physics and electrical engineering.

It has been the greatest discovery, to utilize electrons to control machines and process information. The use of electronics has been everywhere, it is utilized to store your money, to monitor your heartbeat, to transmit the sound of your voice to another people’s phone, and it can guide planes and cars. These cannot be possible without the electrons within the atoms that carry around electrical energy to the circuits.

The circuits inside the electronic equipment are built with components that do different jobs and they are linked together by cables or printed metal connections.

Electrical was discovered earlier than electronics. Now, let us take a peek at how electronics evolved over time.

In 1874, George Johnstone Stoney, an Irish scientist proposed that electricity is built with tiny electrical charges.

In 1875, George Carey, an American scientist built a photoelectric cell that can produce an electricity when a light shines on.

In 1883, Thomas Edison, another American inventor discovered thermionic emission, wherein the electrons are given off by a heated filament.

In 1887, Heinrich Hertz, a German physicist discovered an in-depth understanding of the photoelectric effect. He found out that there is a connection between the light and electricity.

In 1894, the word ‘electron’ was coined by George Johnstone Stoney.

In 1897, J.J. Thomson, a British physicist proved that cathode rays are a negatively charged particle, that was renamed as electrons.

In 1904, John Ambrose Fleming, an English scientist discovered the Fleming valve, later called diode, and it became an indispensable component in radios.

In 1906, Lee De Forest, improved the valve made by John Fleming, the triode or audion. It has greatly improved the designs of radios. Lee De Forest was then known as the father of modern radio.

In 1947, John Bardeen, Walter Brattain, and William Shockley developed the transistor at Bell Laboratories. It revolutionized electronics and digital computers.

In 1958, Jack Kilby of Texas Instruments who worked independently, and Robert Noyce of Fairchild Semiconductor developed the integrated circuits.

In 1971, Marcian Edward Hoff and Federico Faggin managed to squeeze all the key components of a computer in a single chip. It produced the world’s first general-purpose microprocessor.

In 1987, Theodore Fulton and Gerald Dolan of Bell Laboratories developed the first single-electron transistor.

In 2008, the Hewlett-Packard researcher Stanley Williams built the first working memristor, a new kind of magnetic circuit component that worked like a resistor with a memory.

Come to think of something that does not involve electronics, who would have thought that electrons, the tiniest of all things, can have a large impact on the people’s lives? One of the areas that have great benefit with electronics is the entertainment. Moreover, electronics save our lives, hospitals are packed with electronic devices that can help maintain and monitor lives, and cars with airbags in the steering wheel that can be triggered by electronic circuits give us an extra protection.

Microelectronics: An Introduction

What is microelectronics?

By definition, microelectronics is a specialized field that is under the discipline of Electronics Engineering. In electronics, it deals with tiny, or microscopic components to manufacture electronics. It has been rapidly evolving, as the demand for small and less costly devices advances, microelectronics continues to expand.

There are three main areas microelectronics focus, these are research, reliability, and manufacture. The downside of the equipment and expertise being utilized in the manufacturing of microelectronic devices are not widely available, thus the microelectronic devices are generally expensive than devices that do not use microelectronics.

These electronic devices are mostly made from semiconductor materials, and many components of a normal electronic design are available in a microelectronic equivalent. Transistors, capacitors, inductors, resistors, diodes, insulators and conductors are found in a microelectronic device. The microscopic sizes of the components lead, and pads require a unique wiring technique called wire bonding, which can be utilized by a specialized equipment, thus making the devices expensive.

A semiconductor material has an electrical conductivity value that falls between of a conductor and an insulator. As the temperature increases, its resistance decreases, this is a characteristic opposite of a metal.

A transistor is a semiconductor device that is utilized to amplify or switch the electronic signals and electrical power. It has at least three terminals to connect to an external circuit. A voltage or current is applied to one pair of the transistor’s terminals. It is a fundamental building block of the modern electronic devices.

A capacitor is a passive two-terminal electrical component that stores electrical energy in an electric field. It is widely used in electronic circuits for blocking direct current while allowing alternating current to pass.

An inductor is also a passive two-terminal electrical component that stores electrical energy in a magnetic field when electric current flows through it. It is one of the three passive linear circuit elements that make up an electronic circuit. It is also used to separate signals of different frequencies.

A resistor is a passive two-terminal electrical component that implements electrical resistance as a circuit element.

A diode is a two-terminal electronic component that conducts current primarily in one direction and it has a low resistance in one direction, and a high resistance in the other. Nowadays, most diodes are made of silicon.

An insulator is an electrical component whose internal electric charges do not flow freely and has a little electric current that can flow through under the influence of an electric field. It has a property that distinguishes itself from other components, it is its resistivity, and insulators have higher resistivity than semiconductors or conductors. Insulators are utilized in electrical equipment to support and separate electrical conductors without allowing current through themselves.

A conductor is an object or type of material that allows the flow of an electrical current in one or more directions.

As microelectronics is quickly developing, it suggests for a more potential future of new advancements.

Batteries

A battery is the source of an electrical energy that is provided by one or more electrochemical cells after it is converted from the stored chemical energy. Batteries are subdivided into two categories, the primary batteries, and the secondary batteries.

Primary Battery

It is the most commonly used battery for portable devices that have a low current drain. This kind of battery is for single-use, they are sometimes called throw-away batteries. When it is empty, it cannot be recharged, thus it is discarded after use. Disposable primary cells cannot be reliably recharged since the chemicals used are not easily reversible and its active forms may not be returned to its original phase.

It is commonly used in remote controls, clocks, radios, digital cameras, and MP3 players.

What are the examples of a primary battery?

  1. Alkaline is the most commonly used primary battery, the zinc-alkaline manganese dioxide battery has the most power-per-use than any other alkaline batteries.
  2. Carbon Zinc provides low power, yet has a good shelf life. The zinc-acidic manganese dioxide battery is the lowest cost primary battery.
  3. Lithium Cells has an outstanding performance than the conventional aqueous electrolyte battery systems. Lithium batteries are used in small formats for safety purposes.
  4. Silver Oxide Cells are batteries with high energy density, it is expensive due to the high cost of silver. These are mainly used for watches and calculators, it is commonly seen as button cell.
  5. Zinc Air Cells are batteries with a long run time, since the only stored material in the cell is the anode, and it uses the oxygen from the ambient air as the cathode. This kind of battery is commonly used for hearing aid devices.

Secondary Battery

It is a rechargeable battery, it can be reused after recharging. Rechargeable or secondary cells are made of active materials in the discharged state, it can be recharged by introducing electric current that can reverse the chemical reactions. These batteries have chargers.

What are the examples of a secondary battery?

  1. Rechargeable Alkaline have the lowest cost rechargeable cells, it is a secondary alkaline battery with long shelf life and can be used for moderate-powered applications. This battery is one of the great choices for customers.
  2. Lead-Acid is the most popular rechargeable batteries. Although it uses a toxic chemical, and a carcinogenic compound, the battery product has been proven, economical, and reliable. However, when disposing of the material it should not enter the regular waste stream.
  3. Lithium Ion is the latest breakthrough of rechargeable batteries, it provides more capacity and long life cycle than the nickel-metal hydride. However, this should be handled with caution since overheating can damage the battery and can cause a fire.
  4. Nickel-Cadmium is batteries that are reliable and rugged. It exhibits a high-power capability, wide operating temperature range, a long life cycle, yet it has a low run time.

Nickel-Metal Hydride are an extension for nickel-cadmium batteries, it has the same voltage as the nickel-cadmium yet it offers a lesser capacity. However, it can still provide a high current capability and a long life cycle.

Electronic Components

Did you know that there is two classification of electronic components?

This is the Active Electronic Components and the Passive Electronic Components.

Active electronic components can control the flow of electricity. It has the gain and directionality. An example of this are transistors, vacuum tubes, and silicon-controlled rectifiers.

Passive electronic components do not have the ability to control the current by means of another electrical signal. It does not have the gain or directionality. An example of this are capacitors, resistors, inductors, and transformers.

Here are the electronic components and their function:

Terminals and Connectors— makes the electrical connection.

Resistors— used to resist the current.

Switches— used to conduct or deduct.

Capacitors— stores electrical charge in an electrical field.

Magnetic or inductive components— uses magnetism.

Network components— uses more than one type of passive component.

Piezoelectric devices, crystals, resonators— a passive component; uses piezoelectric effect.

Semiconductors— electronic control components that do not have moving parts.

Diodes— conducts electricity in only one direction.

Transistors— semiconductor device that is capable of amplification.

Integrated circuits—micro electric computer electronic circuit incorporated into a chip or semiconductor.

Electrical versus Electronic

Most of us think that electrical and electronics are the same. However, do not get confused, these two terms are technically different. Their devices behave differently, how it manipulates the electricity to the specified task.

By definition, electrical is anything related to or has the concern with electricity. It relates to the charges being produced by the magnetic fields to act on another charge. The electrical devices change the current into another form of energy, like heat or light. Electrical devices were first invented than the electronic devices. It uses alternate current, and high voltage.

Meanwhile, electronics is the science and technology that is concerned with the development and application of electronic devices and circuits. It understands the behavior of components and the ability of the device to control the flow of electrons. Electronics also transform the current into another form of energy, however, it manipulates the current to make the device perform a specified task. It uses direct current, and low voltage.

Although the distinction between electric and electronic devices is a bit hazy, there are instances that an electrical device comprises some electronic components.

Tips on How To Start an Electronic Parts Store

If you are thinking of starting an electronic parts store, this is a great decision because this is a lucrative investment that can bring you a lot of money. However, just like any other type of business, it is important to ensure that you apply the right strategies in the process. In addition, you have to make sure that you follow all the laid down regulations in the area. Below are some of the top tips on how to start an electronic parts store.

Choose the right location

The location of the electronic parts store will determine greatly if it will succeed or not. So, you have to make sure that you select an appropriate location where you will be able to reach all your potential customers in an effective manner. Choose a place where customers have to travel long distance or a place that is so hidden to the extent that they will spend a lot of time to spot your store.

Apply for the right documentations

After you have decided on the location, it is now time to apply for the documents required for you to operate an electronic parts store. There are different documents required and all what you need to do is to make sure that you check with your local authorities to determine all the documents you will need for you to be permitted to operate. Having all the required documents ensures you do not fall in the wrong hands of the law.

Decide the electronic parts to sell

It is obvious that you cannot stock all the electronic parts in your store. The secret here is to ensure that you carry out thorough market research to understand the parts that are in high demand in your area. This will ensure that you do not stock parts that will lay idle on your store and offer no value to you. Stock those that are required most by your target audience to increase chances of making high sales.

Come up with the right price strategy 

One thing that is for sure is that you will not be the only one operating an electronic store in your area. The competition will be there and you have to try to gain a competitive edge. One of the most effective strategies is to ensure that you offer your parts at the most competitive price. You can also offer discounts and other incentives to attract more customers in your store.

5 Qualities Of A Good Electronic Parts Store

When you want to buy electronic parts, it is important to ensure that you make your purchase from the best store. One thing you realize is that there are many of these stores, but not all of them have the best qualities. Here are five qualities of a good electronic parts store.

Offer high quality parts

One of the qualities of a great store is that it offers high quality electronic parts. They ensure that all the parts they offer to customers are original. They only source the parts from reputable manufacturers to ensure that they do not offer counterfeit electronic parts to their customers.

Provide the parts at a competitive price

A good electronic parts store offer products at a price that is neither too low nor too high. The store ensures that the parts are sold at a price that does not make the customers strain in their budget. They also do not offer them at a very low price because they understand that the parts are of high quality.

Offer warranty and guarantee

Another quality of a good store is that they offer all the electronic parts with a warranty period. This means that if any of the parts they sell to customers fails to work accordingly within the warranty period, customers have a right to return it for replacements without any charges. In addition, they offer a guarantee that the parts will function as indicated failure to which customers can get their money back.

High level customer service

A good store has customer service that ensures that customers are satisfied. When customers visit the store, they do not only get high quality products, but handled in a friendly and professional manner. They have staff who understand how the different parts operate and can offer comprehensive information to customers regarding the different products provided.

Provide discounts and offers 

Customers require to be treated in a special way in order for them to keep on coming back to an electronic parts store. This is why a good store usually offer discounts and other offers to their customers as incentives to keep the coming back and refer others. With these types of incentives, it becomes possible for the store to attract a lot of customers and earn more profits. This is also a promotion strategy that makes customers feel that they are appreciated when they buy the electronic parts from the store.