geralt via Pixabay
The IoT Evolution Expo in Fort Lauderdale Florida is coming up. I will be attending as a wireless analyst and telecom industry analyst trying to get a read on the current state of IoT and determine where we are and where we are heading in this rapidly growing area. The Internet of Things or IoT is quickly sweeping into my world and changing everything. In fact, many different technologies and sectors are crashing together in this new world like IoT, M2M, B2B, the Cloud, AI and so much more.
Many executives have already scheduled meetings with me at the show. I think the reason is that wireless and telecom is playing a growing and important role in IoT and they want to share their stories. Companies want to get on the radar. They want to talk with analysts and the media to share their story with investors, workers, customers, partners and so on. Whether they are public or private companies, they want to position themselves as leaders in this new area. And who can blame them?
Pull Camera Back, Long-Term Historical Perspective on IoT
Shows like this are often focused on their areas to the exclusion of others. So, I will try and pull the camera back and look at this important transformation from a longer-term, historical perspective. The reason being, I’m asked to share my thoughts on where we are today and where we are going tomorrow by readers of my column and executives at companies that are leading the charge.
There are so many companies, large and small, rapidly moving into this growing IoT space. Companies like AT&T (T), Verizon (VZ), Sprint (S), Qualcomm (QCOM), IBM (IBM), Telit, Kore Telematics, Numerex (NMRX), Centri, Eurotech, Yokigowa, Ingenu, Harman, Gemalto, Cradlepoint, Tellient, Senet, Sequans, Coris, Alcatel, Comcast Business (CMCSA), Cox Business, RingCentral, Sennheiser, Vtech and so many others. Some of these companies will be at this show, but they are all players in one slice or another of IoT.
IBM, Kore, Telit, Comcast Business, Cox Business, RingCentral and More
How many of these companies are you already aware of? Most people are familiar with some… and that’s the point. That’s going to change going forward. Many of these companies that you don’t yet know will continue to grow, develop strong brand names in this space and lead in the IoT race. A race which we have only just begun.
This is important for investors, executives, workers and partners of the space. The opportunities are growing. This is going to be a crazy ride going forward. Think about it: All these companies are playing in the IoT space, but all are not yet focused on interoperability. This is going to be an important issue going forward. Every company is dabbling in this new world. Interoperability is important. Working together is important. Getting systems to talk together and work together will play an important role in generating the power that IoT can deliver.
Not only do we have to have all these new technologies and devices, but to realize the real power of IoT, we must tie them together and let them talk to each other. Carriers play an important role in the development of IoT. Whether wireless or wireline. Even MVNO companies are players in the IoT space.
AT&T Connects the Most IoT Devices
The leader today is AT&T, which connects more IoT devices than any other provider in North America. They also have a global network in over 200 different countries and territories. They made several announcements at CES in Las Vegas which included smart city development in Atlanta, Chicago and Dallas and how they are testing their smart cities operations in other cities as well.
They are a leader in IoT growth. It is important to remember we are very early in this new opportunity. I expect it to continue to grow rapidly for years to come since IoT has its foot in many different industry segments.
KORE Largest MVNO in IoT
I also understand KORE Telematics is a leading MVNO in this space. They have deals with different providers in different countries. This approach can make it easier for companies to work worldwide. This is an enormous growth opportunity for both large and small players in this space. Plus, it’s important to remember, there are a growing number of companies in this IoT space.
IoT will play an important and growing role in smart cities, healthcare, smart cars, asset management, vehicle solutions and so much more. This is a relatively new space and is rapidly growing. There is so much activity in this loud space and it can be tough to figure out who are the real leaders and who are just talkers, to date.
IoT Expands: Smart Cities, Healthcare, Smart Cars, Asset Management, Vehicle Solutions
So, I look forward to visiting the IoT Evolution Expo, and to talking with executives of many different companies. Some are companies I have followed for years. Others are brand new to me. I’ll share with you the lowdown on IoT, where they stand and what’s coming next. Plus, how wireless will play an increasingly important role in the future of IoT.
As a wireless analyst, I think tomorrow looks very bright for IoT and for the wireless and telecom industry. Many companies in many different sectors are all converging, and wireless and telecom are in the center of all that chaos. As always, some of the questions I have are what’s coming next and how it will transform our world, for the user, the worker, business, government and so much more.
IoT is just one of many technologies that are rapidly transforming our world. So, enjoy the ride. We all play a role in this new world whether we are an investor, executive, worker, partner or customer. The growth opportunities are amazing, so stay tuned.
Jeff Kagan is an Equities.com columnist. Kagan is a Wireless Analyst, Telecom Analyst, Industry Analyst, speaker and consultant. He follows wireless, wire line, telecom, Internet, cable TV, IPTV, Cloud, Mobile Pay, FinTech and communications technology. Email him at [email protected]. His web site is www.jeffKAGAN.com. Follow him on Twitter @jeffkagan