Strategy Analytics finds 22 billion IoT connected devices with an unsure revenue source

Latest research from Strategy Analytics showed that the number of devices connected to the internet reached 22 billion worldwide at the end of 2018. Enterprise IoT remains the leading segment, accounting for more than half of the market, with mobile/computing making up just over a quarter.

The report predicts, however, that Hhome will be the fastest growing segment over the coming years, driven by further rapid growth in smart home adoption, particularly in as-yet untapped regions.

With 22 billion IoT and connected devices deployed worldwide by the end of last year and a further 17 billion will be added by 2025, enterprise IoT has been the major driver of growth in recent years, through longer term projections suggest that the connected home will shortly overtake mobile/computing, as well as enterprise in the longer term, which will have important implications for future network deployments, including 5G.

This report collates and updates top line forecasts from multiple SA device services and provides a realistic assessment of the nature and future scale of the global connected device installed base.

The report concludes that the IoT revenue opportunity remains uncertain, particularly for service providers, and that companies looking to benefit from the IoT should give most consideration to which target segments, business activities and revenue models they should prioritize.

The report predicts that 38.6 billion devices will be connected by 2025, and 50 billion by 2030. Some segments (such as connected computing devices) will see low growth or decline, while others (such as media devices) will continue to expand steadily. Growth rates for wearable devices and connected vehicles will remain positive, but volumes will be modest relative to other segments.

“Service providers may look at the vast scale of the internet of things and assume that revenues will automatically flow in their direction,” said David Mercer, principal analyst and the report’s author. “But it remains to be seen precisely which applications and services will drive revenue growth, and how much. Furthermore, more research is needed to understand how this ecosystem will evolve to meet the needs of tomorrow’s consumers.”

“With the global connected device installed base on track for nearly 40 billion by 2025, there is a huge opportunity for semiconductor display manufacturers, cameras, memory, battery and other enabling technology providers,” said David Kerr, senior vice president at Strategy Analytics. “AI will become pervasive in mobile, home, automotive and computing platforms. Optimizing the user experience across multiple devices, OS and user interfaces will be a key battleground.”

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