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Online gets more attention as pandemic wipes out $200b of IoT revenues

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Since 2017, there has been a notable increase in the range of online services in developing countries, covering diverse areas including education, healthcare and e-government.
   
The Global System for Mobile telecommunications Association (GSMA), which disclosed this, suggested usage is becoming more diverse and beneficial, which is consistent with consumers reporting substantial benefits from mobile internet use beyond core communications and social networking (mostly Facebook and some others).
   
According to the telecoms body, the breadth of mobile Internet usage is likely to increase further as a result of COVID-19, considering the need for social distancing.
   
GSMA said these online activities include instant messaging; social networking; making and receiving calls online; make or receive video calls; read news; watch free online video; play games; access information for education.
   

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Others are getting information about products and services; listen to music; health; pay utilities: look or apply for jobs; government services and order or purchase goods online.

MEANWHILE, GSMA has projected that the impact of the 2020 slowdown will reverberate over the longer term more in spending than volumes.   

As a result, the global Internet of Things (IoT) revenues will triple by 2025, this is 20 per cent lower ($200 billion) than what it would have been without the pandemic.
  
According to the GSMA, most of the competitive intensity is focused on the application and analytics layer of the IoT value chain.
  
Conversely, GSMA said commoditisation is the reason for connectivity shrinking to just five per cent of the value chain. It stressed that operators have been expanding their capabilities beyond connectivity to capture a larger proportion of the overall market.
 
GSMA, which said the majority of enterprises’ IoT deployments remain small, though the average deployment size has increased since 2018, noted that the smaller scale reflects the fact that smaller enterprises tend to deploy fewer devices.
   
According to it, it may also reflect technical and integration challenges associated with installing IoT services – areas not talked about in the early part of the hype cycle when the focus was on idealised prospects for transformation.
   
The telecoms body noted that as more devices touch enterprise systems and use cases expand, deploying IoT is getting tougher. It disclosed that the top three challenges still centre on integration, security and data privacy, and cost
    
It pointed out that employee/internal resistance has grown markedly, reflecting the fact that education on the benefits of IoT has to extend beyond C-level.
    
GSMA observed that saving and making money are still the two main motivators for installing IoT devices. According to it, the revenue goal has become more pressing over the last two years as organisations seek to recoup their investments, and better analytics capabilities help with targeted sales (e.g. faster delivery times for logistics firms).
   
According to the telecoms body, the biggest change has been a rise in deployments to comply with the regulation. This is particularly the case in sectors requiring rigorous tracking, such as with utility meters for residential and commercial premises.

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