IoT Connectivity: "All of the Above"

By most estimates, device connectivity revenue might represent as little as five percent or perhaps 10 percent of the new revenue to be created by most internet of things applications and services. Among the reasons is that existing connectivity solutions could well play a part

Short-range access methods such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and 802.15.4, for example, could be device connectivity options that leverage existing network access services. To the extent that happens, nearly zero incremental access revenue is created.

ABI Research forecasts IoT will represent 15 percent of Wi-Fi, 27 percent of Bluetooth, and over 60 percent of 802.15.4 device shipments by 2022.

LPWAN and legacy M2M cellular technologies are set to ship nearly 575 million chipsets by 2022, growing faster than any short-range connectivity solution across IoT verticals.

ABI Research finds that cellular and LPWAN technologies, often perceived as more reliable than short-range connectivity solutions, require less intermediary gateways, can support greater distances between end nodes, and scale from the very smallest to the largest number of end devices, while providing a battery life that exceeds 10 years.

It is reasonable to assume widespread use of existing short-range access methods to support consumer wearable apps. It might not be so much the case for enterprise and business apps, which might require higher perceived reliability or reach.

“These technologies are specifically designed for IoT and are arguably much better matches for outdoor, larger-scale IoT applications due to their abilities to target greater coverage areas, their ease of deployment, and their greater scalability,” says says Andrew Zignani, Senior Analyst at ABI Research.
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