This time of year, it can seem like the world is swimming in predictions for the new year, and the Internet of Things (IoT) is no exception. In fact, in fast-evolving areas like IoT, multitudes of trends and opportunities and challenges are in play, making predictions ridiculously easy — just about anything can happen, and probably will.
So, my goal here is to identify a set of IoT predictions that are both likely to happen … and likely to have a significant impact on the development and implementation of the technology.
Here are the six I came up with:
1. IoT growth will continue — in devices, data, and investment
Well, duh. According to IDC, the IoT is going to stay hot, with investment expected to top $1 trillion by 2020, just one year after 2019. That will help fund a 30 percent annual growth rate in cellular IoT connections until 2023, per Ericsson (as reported in Forbes), which I calculate to result in about 1.3 billion connections in 2019. Looked at another way, IoT devices and services will reach an inflection point of 18 to 20 percent adoption in 2019, per DBS Asian Insights
Heck, at this rate, 2019 might even be the year when average consumers finally get the message of what the IoT is actually all about, and why they should care.
2. 5G networks will make their presence felt
Sure, lots of IoT devices rely on low-powered, low-data-rate networks such as NB-IoT and Cat-M. But the rollout of of 5G networks will have a big effect on high-end IoT applications linked to robotics and automation, virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) and artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML).
Read more: Six IoT predictions for 2019