LTE will become the leading technology for cellular IoT devices in 2019, a new research report from Berg Insight predicts. Berg is forecasting that global shipments of cellular IoT devices will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.1% to reach 239.7 million units in 2020.
LTE device shipments started to take off in 2015 and are expected to surpass GPRS devices in four years’ time.
“2G is still growing rapidly in emerging markets and has a clear cost advantage in Europe. The economics of 4G is, however, dramatically improved with LTE Cat-0 (expected to be commercially available in 2017) and the upcoming LTE-M standard (expected to be commercially available in 2018). Once these are in place there will be no more significant barriers left against migration from 2G,” said Tobias Ryberg, senior analyst, Berg Insight and author of the report.
As a result of the direct move from 2G to 4G, Berg Insight 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.
Berg Insight believes that the 3GPP’s recent initiative to define a new narrowband radio technology for IoT (NB-IoT) – one of the so-called ‘Clean Slate’ options, is highly significant and creates a unique opportunity for the mobile industry to include a new set of applications into its domain.
“A global universal standard for lightweight IoT communication on public networks is essential for driving the market forward,” concluded Ryberg.
Download report brochure here: Wireless IoT Connectivity Technologies and Markets
See also: In search of the low-power wide area network standard for IoT