Cellular networks will generate nearly 60% of all M2M connectivity revenues by 2018, according to a new study from ABI Research.
The market-research company predicts that M2M connectivity will be embedded in more than two billion devices across nine key industries by that date, but reckons cellular will be the dominant technology in terms of revenues generated by M2M services.
“Looking at demand for connectivity, while cellular will not have the highest number of connections, or the highest average revenue per connection, it will provide the greatest opportunity to drive the most overall value from those connections,” said Jonathan Collins, a principal analyst with ABI Research.
Manufacturers are currently assessing a number of connectivity options for use with M2M devices – including satellite, fixed-line and short-range wireless, besides cellular – but ABI Research believes cellular is best placed to deliver the most value.
According to the research, cellular combines the various advantages of mobility, flexibility, coverage and simple connection management, and allows network operators to best leverage a return from M2M connections.
“Over the forecast period short-range wireless or wireless sensor network connectivity will outpace cellular connection growth, but there is little ability for those connections to directly deliver any revenues for the provision of that connectivity,” said Collins. “In addition, satellite with higher revenue per connection does not have the same versatility as cellular limiting its appeal to fewer verticals.”