David Hambling, CEO of Pod Group Asia Pacific, examines the issues and challenges surrounding the development of the mobile connectivity landscape over the coming years.
Connectivity is a key enabler of IoT. Just as the number of active devices is forecast to grow over the next ten years, so too do analysts predict IoT connections to increase nearly fourfold to 4.7 billion by the year 2030 (Transforma Insights).
While some experts may argue that such predictions are perhaps overly optimistic, there are already clear signs of market growth – particularly in the healthcare industry as a result of the current pandemic – and global connectivity service providers, such as Pod Group, are seeing enterprises increasingly look to prioritize IoT adoption. The question is how is the connectivity landscape set to evolve?
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As cellular technology has moved to 4G and networks have become increasingly IP-based, we are seeing the focus shift to enterprises that are now able to bring more and more of the architecture under their control.
Ensuring long-term network reliability and flexibility is fundamental, and we are already witnessing how the introduction of the eSIM and eUICC technology is putting enterprises, as opposed to the network operator, in the driver’s seat“
Ensuring long-term network reliability and flexibility is fundamental, and we are already witnessing how the introduction of the eSIM and eUICC technology is putting enterprises, as opposed to the network operator, in the driver’s seat. Over-the-air provisioning is synonymous with future-proofing; the ability to swap service providers in and out remotely enables enterprises to respond immediately to changes in network coverage and pricing.
Furthermore, combining eUICC with a multi-IMSI applet on the bootstrap provides an extra layer of resilience, revolutionising mission-critical and globally distributed applications. Such a shift in the balance of power means that, today, device manufacturers and systems integrators have more control over their connectivity than ever before.
As regards 5G, this new cellular standard will eventually facilitate many new IoT applications requiring high bandwidth and low latency, however it will be some time before the technology can fully meet enterprise needs.
That said, private LTE networks are already offering many of the benefits of 5G SA. The availability of shared and unlicensed spectrum bands, as well as network slicing capabilities, is seeing enterprises take control of connectivity, with private networking able to guarantee the high levels of security and resilience required by mission-critical applications. Today, enterprises have a flexible and highly scalable wireless connectivity solution in their hands, with private LTE a stepping stone to 5G.
Empowering enterprises by giving them control of the network will enable them to benefit from the full value of IoT applications in years to come. We are already seeing less reliance on network operators in terms of connectivity management; the introduction of the eSIM and the growth of IP-based networks globally are giving enterprises greater scope to manage connectivity on the fly and apply different security policies or comply with SLAs. Such a shift in network control from the MNO to the enterprise itself will disrupt the global IoT connectivity market forever.
The Future Of Global IoT Connectivity
In conjunction with its members, MEF has undertaken research into the current position and evolution of the market for global IoT connectivity.
Learn how the market is growing and developing – gain insights into market drivers for IoT global connectivity and which segments and geographies offer the greatest opportunities while discovering the network technologies, platforms & competitive environments and how they are evolving.