Significant changes are occurring in the dc/dc converter industry. Although the global merchant market will grow from about $3 billion in 1999 to almost $5 billion in 2004, its composition will change dramatically. These trends are discussed in the new Darnell Group (Corona, CA) report, "DC/DC Converters: Global Market Forecasts, Demand Characteristics and Competitive Environment."This 213-page report identifies the key markets for embedded dc/dc converters. Both higher-wattage, industrial power supplies are discussed, down to point-of-use converters for lower-voltage applications. In fact, the market for point-of-use power supplies is much larger than the nonisolated dc/dc converter market. The adoption of advanced microprocessors is driving converters to lower voltages and higher current levels. Nonisolated, point-of-load converters are growing at a faster rate than conventional, isolated dc/dc converters. Nonisolated converters are beginning to be found in hubs, routers and other communications equipment, and Darnell projects that these converters will be used with more non-microprocessor applications than microprocessor applications in the future.The application segments in this report include Computers, Communications, Industrial, Portable, and Military/Aerospace. Additional detailed breakdowns are given for Computers (Desktop, Network Equipment, and four types of Servers) and Communications (Central Office, Wireless, Remote, CPE and Broadband). Also, five geographical regions are broken out: Worldwide, North America, Europe, Asia, and Central and Latin America. Forecasts are also provided by Wattage Level, Input Voltage, Output Voltage, Isolated vs Nonisolated, and High Density vs Low Density.A chapter on Demand Characteristics discusses product features, power requirements, voltage regulator modules (VRMs), dollars/W or dollars/A, input/output voltage demands, bus termination power, decoupling capacitors, and isolated vs. nonisolated designs. In addition, the top five dc/dc converter companies in each geographical region are profiled in the Competitive Environment chapter.