Skip to main content

Wireless Technology Trends will Fuel New IoT Apps

Wireless communications technology continues to transform the telecom landscape. Projected growth across the smart home, wearables, beacons, healthcare, smart cities, automotive, and commercial building automation, will help accelerate the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth share of device shipments.

According to the latest worldwide market study by ABI Research, Internet of Things (IoT) end markets will represent 31 percent of total Bluetooth and 27 percent of Wi-Fi device shipments in 2024 -- that's up from 13 percent and 10 percent respectively in 2018.

Wireless Technology Market Development

Smartphones will continue to be important markets for both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, however, when it comes to the Bluetooth shipments, the IoT market is expected to overtake the smartphone market for the first time in 2024 as its share of the market falls to less than 30 percent.

Furthermore, the share of smartphones as a proportion of Wi-Fi device shipments is also set to fall below 40 percent by 2024.

"Bluetooth will continue to grow in other areas, such as speakers, headsets, mobile and PC accessories, and both technologies will continue to push into other consumer electronics devices such as connected toys and home entertainment. However, the IoT is beginning to take an increasingly significant share of the market," said Andrew Zignani, principal analyst at ABI Research.

Key IoT opportunities for Bluetooth are asset management and location services in devices such as beacons and personal trackers. These devices are anticipated to grow from around 2 percent of the Bluetooth market in 2018 to over 8.5 percent by 2024.

Bluetooth enabled wearable devices are also expected to break the 400 million device barrier by 2024, with increased traction in smartwatches, activity trackers, smart clothing, and hearables. Also, Wi-Fi-enabled wearables are expected to reach over 250 million units by this time.

The smart home will be one of the fastest-growing markets for both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technologies. Wi-Fi-enabled smart home devices are expected to grow from 5 percent in 2018 to nearly 16 percent by 2024 and Bluetooth will rise from 4 percent to 13 percent in the same forecast period, with traction in voice-control front ends, smart appliances, smart lighting, sensor devices, video cameras, and others.

From a Wi-Fi perspective, Wi-Fi 6 has great potential within the IoT space, thanks to new enhancements such as target wake time, OFDMA, and narrowband implementations. However, ABI Research believes that the transition away from 802.11n in favor of Wi-Fi 6 will take some time.

According to the ABI assessment, 802.11n is a very well-established technology available at very low cost from a wide number of vendors while new chipsets driving down power consumption are continuing to arrive at the market. Many industry players are still having product discussions leveraging 802.11n and expect this to continue for some time.

In addition, some regions, such as China, are more conservative on newer technologies. Much of the initial marketing around Wi-Fi 6 has been at the higher end with limited focus on IoT applications.

While this is understandable given the initial rollout in networking, laptop and smartphone clients, much needs to be done to educate the industry around the other benefits that Wi-Fi 6 can bring about for battery constrained IoT devices.

However, as 802.11ax chipset prices fall and vendors refine their product lines to support IoT clients, this is likely to change. ABI Research expects the IoT market to transition toward Wi-Fi 6 in earnest within 2-3 years.

Outlook for Wireless Technology Innovation

Chipset availability for 802.11ah -- also known as Wi-Fi HaLow -- is still very limited. Many HaLow ICs are still in development and most of these are from startup companies -- in fact, many of the traditional Wi-Fi IC vendors are not backing the technology and do not have any HaLow ICs on the market.

However, the first products are finally beginning to arrive, and the next 12-18 months will be crucial in establishing HaLow’s position in the IoT landscape.

Popular posts from this blog

Digital Transformation for the Oil and Gas Sector

The savvy CEOs of multinational organizations will accelerate their investment in digital transformation projects in 2022, and beyond, to improve their competitiveness. Every industry leader that is forward-looking will act swiftly to grasp the upside opportunity. Global oil & gas companies face a myriad of operational, commercial, and existential security threats. According to the latest worldwide market study by ABI Research, oil & gas firms apply digitalization to combat these threats and will spend $15.6 billion on digital technologies by 2030. Oil & Gas Digital Apps Market Development Investments in digitalization can help to analyze a supply pipeline’s condition, prepare for fluctuations in the changing prices for oil and gas, as well as aid action plans to create more sustainable operations and transfer to producing renewable energy sources. "Safety and Security are top priorities for oil & gas operators. Data analytics allied with IoT platforms have become

The Fastest-Growing Mobile Opportunity in 2022

The number of mobile communication subscriptions worldwide is currently estimated at 8 billion, with 6 billion on smartphone connections, from a user base of 5.9 billion unique subscribers among a global population of 7.9 billion. Fifth-generation (5G) mobile service subscriptions using a compatible device significantly grew during the COVID-19 pandemic, but 4G connections remain the dominant force within the global telecom service provider sector. While the use of mobile phones is common throughout developing nations, 4G services are still an emerging technology in many parts of the world. Overall, 5G subscriptions will likely grow from 580 million at the end of 2021 to 3.5 billion by the end of 2026. 5G Mobile Market Development According to the latest worldwide market study by Juniper Research, revenue generated from 5G mobile services will reach $600 billion by 2026 -- representing 77 percent of global network operator-billed revenue. The adoption of 5G services across consumer and

2022 Tech Trends Outlook: What Happens Next?

This year may very well be another period of unprecedented challenges and opportunities. In 2022, several highly anticipated technology-related advancements will NOT happen, according to the predictions by ABI Research. Their analysts identify many trends that will shape the technology market and some others that, although attracting huge amounts of pundit speculation and commentary, are less likely to advance rapidly over the next twelve months. "The fallout from COVID-19 prevention measures, the process of transitioning from pandemic to endemic disease, and global political tensions weigh heavily on the coming year's fortunes," said Stuart Carlaw, chief research officer at ABI Research . What Won’t Happen in 2022? Despite all the headlines and investments, the metaverse will not arrive in 2022 or, for that matter, within the typical 5-year forecast window. The metaverse is still more of a buzzword and vision than a fully-fledged end goal with a clearly defined arrival d