As is now customary at this time of year, we here at Gemalto have spent the last few weeks compiling questions from influencers and industry experts on all things mobile. With Mobile World Congress kicking off this week, the time has come to share our responses, starting with questions from Lavanya Rammohan from Compass Intelligence. Lavanya asked us a series of questions which we’ve answered in turn below.
1) What will be the next big growth area for monetizing the M2M market?
The M2M market is maturing. It started out as single-purpose, hard-wired solutions, but is now transforming into cloud-based, enterprise-integrated solutions based on flexible hardware. Companies that provide flexible hardware and simple ways of integrating these devices to the cloud will be onto a winner.
We also expect vertical applications to gain traction over the course of this year. Automotive is the area where we expect to see major growth and innovation, with companies such as Audi already making use of the many possibilities of M2M.
2) Will mHealth start to make traction or will the automotive industry continue to dominate innovation in the M2M market?
As we noted above, automotive is currently driving a lot of the innovation in M2M. Whilst we hear plenty of talk about ‘Industry 4.0’ or the industrial internet, at the moment it is wearable technnology which is the big success story of mHealth, in particular with lifestyle and fitness applications.
In time this will spread out to chronic care, but uptake of this will naturally be slower due to increased regulation in this area.
3) Since industry players are constantly talking about the connected home, is it something that consumers truly want now or is the industry years ahead of the customers?
The largest barrier to the adoption of connected home solutions is the wide range of standards and therefore silo applications.
With concerns over privacy and security currently high on the agenda, we need to create a secure and trusted infrastructure that enables service innovation, while also protecting the data of participants. With innovative and secure new services, this market could evolve from a niche for the tech-savvy and wealthy to a genuinely mass-market proposition.
4) How do you see the M2M ecosystem evolving as newer companies start to enter the market?
We’ve already seen the rise of communication management platforms such as Jasper Wireless. Over the next year or so I would expect to see some application platform providers develop more profitable business models. We have already seen from the sale of Thingworx for more than $110 million that there is interest in this area, and money to be made too.