IoT Predictions for 2019: Less Hype, More Pragmatism
It seems at the close of every year, a handful of tech pundits project that the coming year will be the “year of IoT.” After several years in a row of warm rather than meteoric growth, there are fewer people making that claim for 2019. While it may seem like a clichéd projection, next year is likely to be something of a mixed bag for the Internet of Things. On the one hand, vendors are striving to make IoT easier to deploy, which could accelerate adoption. On the other hand, parallel technologies that could benefit IoT, including 5G and blockchain, will likely mostly remain immature throughout the coming year. To learn more about our IoT predictions for 2019, read on:
A Simplified Market Will Spur IoT Growth
The IoT market is poised to continue expanding and the market is gradually becoming easier to navigate. While in 2018, there is no shortage of IoT-based services to help organizations launch IoT projects, for many end users, deploying an IoT project at scale and managing it over time remains difficult. Forrester expects things to improve next year with an uptick in services to help end users “manage, monitor and operate the fragmented array of IoT devices, networks and assets.” Forrester expects companies with IoT deployments in the domains of manufacturing, health care, retail and utilities to sign nine-figure contracts with vendors to help them “run” their IoT projects.
The antenna vendor Taoglas has similar IoT predictions. “Vendors will begin to see their perseverance in IoT pay off,” said Dermot O’Shea, joint chief executive officer of Taoglas Group. “Vendors that have been around since the early days of IoT are finally beginning to make hay.”
While IoT pundits differ on whether the IoT market in 2019 will see steady or rapid growth, O’Shea is in the optimistic camp. “2019 is when we’ll see the real growth in the market that has been forecasted for years,” he said. “The reason? Many industries are beginning to finally see scale in their IoT applications, and new applications are popping up with scale that no one forecasted.” As evidence, he points to a surge in demand in IoT antennas. “While 10,000 units of an IoT antenna used to be a big order, 100,000-unit orders are now common,” he said.
While in the early years of IoT adoption, it was difficult to find connected projects achieving widespread adoption, but that is no longer the case. Smart speakers are on their way to becoming a commodity item for many consumers and IoT-enabled electric scooters are seeing rapid growth. There will soon be millions of them across the world, O’Shea said. “Street lighting, electricity meters, and other utility and smart city applications will also see exponential growth in 2019,” he added. “The IoT tsunami that was predicted for the latter half of the 2010s never materialized, but instead, a series of small waves will increase IoT deployment numbers dramatically.”
The Smart Home Market Will See Growth and Diversification
After a fuzzy period of smart home uncertainty in which consumers asked questions like: “Why would I want to have a connected toaster,” consumers — and vendors — are beginning to understand what an appealing smart home technology looks like.
Smart speakers, in particular, are strong, representing the bestselling consumer technology. Amazon has convinced 60 percent of its Prime members to buy at least one Amazon Echo and 30 percent of its non-Prime customer base has one, according to survey data from Business Insider. And while sales of Amazon Echo smart speakers appear to be approaching saturation, sales of the Google Home speaker and voice assistant are…