In Business Model, Internet Access, Mobile, News, Spectrum

It might seem almost silly to argue that Internet of Things will be a significant revenue source for most mobile service providers in South Asia or Southeast Asia, anytime soon, irrespective of what might happen in Northeast Asia.=

Actually, a recent survey of service providers from more than 40 nations suggests few service provider executives believe IoT will contribute much revenue anytime soon. For that matter, few global executives expect consumer services–with one notable exception–to be a significant revenue driver, either.

A panel of global service provider executives surveyed by E&Y expects enterprise services–not consumer services–to drive future revenue growth.

That notable exception is video entertainment services, expected by 54 percent of respondents to be the service with best opportunities for incremental revenue growth. Among the more-promising fields identified by the executives, 51 percent saw enterprise cloud opportunities as most promising.

There was much less consensus about many of the other services deemed drivers of future revenue growth. And though some of the services could be marketed directly to consumers, most of the opportunities seem logically to involve an enterprise partner.

Perhaps significantly, Internet of Things did not actually appear to be viewed as a revenue driver, at all.

If that is the case, it might not matter much which platforms ultimately will emerge as dominant for Internet of Things connectivity. On the other hand, sooner or later, it will matter, as no major global trend fails to affect developing markets. 

Near term, some would bet on 2G as the platform for most IoT apps. That likely makes sense for most developing markets, as 2G is ubiquitous. 

Others would bet on Long Term Evolution or 5G or a specialized narrowband protocol in the medium term. But that is most likely to apply in developed markets. 

Berg Insight predicts that LTE will become the leading technology for cellular IoT devices in 2019.


Tobias Ryberg, Berg Insight senior analyst, believes that 3G will only serve as an interim technology in cellular IoT.

Annual shipments of 3G cellular IoT devices are predicted to peak in 2018. Instead, the main alternative to 4G cellular technologies will be Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) networking technologies.

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