The enterprise, or industrial, IoT opportunity has the potential to be a game-changer for communications service providers (CSPs) and IoT platform providers. IoT offerings are developing beyond smart home technology with enterprise IoT initiatives, such as smart lighting, water metering, and smart farming, beginning to emerge. Technologically, IoT enables intelligent business decisions by bringing together near real-time data and insights. In many ways, IoT not only helps reduce operational costs but can also create new revenue streams for businesses and governments.
Incognito Software Systems Inc. recently partnered with Telecoms.com for the 2019 edition of their Annual Industry Survey, sponsoring the IoT section of the survey to uncover more about the top IoT vertical markets, developing offering models, and perspectives around the need for device management.
Here is what the survey revealed.
With the potential for IoT to reshape vertical industries through automation and improved data-driven insights, CSPs are fast adopting IoT solutions to take advantage of this burgeoning market. Service providers are well-positioned to support the IoT revolution thanks to their years of investment in the infrastructure, resources, and processes for providing secure, reliable, and low-latency connectivity at mass scale under stringent service-level agreements (SLAs). The 2019 Telecoms.com Annual Industry Survey highlights that IoT development is progressing across the telecom industry with 46% of the survey respondents indicating that their company has already launched IoT, with a further 29% planning to invest in IoT business within the next two years. While a large quantity of IoT offerings today are focused on connectivity only, many CSPs are starting to roll out new end-to-end business applications to create additional value for their enterprise customers. In fact, about 50% of the Telecoms.com survey respondents said they expect to see service providers offering purpose-built IoT applications for different vertical markets within the next two years.
It does, however, need to be mentioned that solutions for the IoT market are not without their challenges. Assuming the access technology and connectivity have been taken care of, CSPs will face operational challenges in managing millions of connected devices. What’s more challenging is the fragmentation in the standards for IoT device communication. The 2019 Telecoms.com Annual Industry Survey highlights that automation, remote device management, vendor neutrality, and the ability to offer business intelligence applications are clearly top priorities in delivering an outstanding service quality experience. This reinforces the need for common multi-tenant platforms that supports numerous vertical applications. Core capabilities of these platforms, such as the Incognito Enterprise IoT solution, include:
- remote device management across multiple device vendors;
- analytics engine to capture business insights;
- comprehensive APIs for third-party integration and applications;
- customizable user interface that can be adapted to serve multiple vertical markets;
Enterprise IoT is well-positioned to be a critical revenue driver for CSPs. Businesses expect CSPs to offer innovative products in the growing market. CSPs’ IoT business models and strategies will need to be tuned. The Telecoms.com survey results clearly indicate, in terms of business model, IoT platforms for applications and purpose-built applications will dominate the market. This confirms the feedback we are receiving from our CSP customers as well. As IoT business models improve, CSPs will be able to increase their monetization and better define the IoT journey for customers.