Silicon germanium (SiGe) has moved from being a research material to accounting for a small but significant percentage of manufactured semiconductor devices. This percentage is predicted to increase substantially as SiGe begins to be used in complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) technology in the future to substantially improve performance. It is the development of Si/SiGe heterostructures which has enabled band structure and strain engineering allowing Si/SiGe to be used in many different ways to improve conventional microelectronic device performance along with allowing new concepts to be explored. This paper presents a review of the material properties, growth techniques, band structure and the main electronic devices of the Si/SiGe heterostructure system. In particular, the important device technologies in mainstream microelectronics of the SiGe heterostructure bipolar transistor (HBT) and strained-Si CMOS will be reviewed before future device and optoelectronics concepts are explored.