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Transforma Insights unveils ten IoT Transition Topics

MAR 16, 2023
region: ALL vertical: ALL Internet of ThingsHyperconnectivityEdge Computing

Key themes related to the seismic changes happening in IoT, and particularly IoT connectivity, will feed into the Transforma Insights research agenda for the year and also represent sponsorship opportunities for organisations involved in IoT.

The Internet of Things is going through a period of pronounced transition, technically, commercially and operationally. Major technology vendors are retrenching away from IoT, technologies such as eSIM and connectivity management platforms are seeing rapid evolution, and the IoT is pivoting from infrastructure-based to software-based architectures, amongst many other things. To reflect these fundamental shifts happening in IoT currently, Transforma Insights has identified 10 ‘IoT Transition Topics’, which will form a major part of its research agenda for 2023.

Commenting, Transforma Insights Founding Partner Matt Hatton said: “In many aspects of IoT we are currently in the middle of a period of flux. It is noticeable that across many key themes in IoT we have moved from a relatively stable model that might have existed just 3-4 years ago, with established business models or well understood technologies, to a period of uncertainty. We have little doubt that those same themes will find their ‘steady state’ again in a matter of another 3-4 years. The key for the IoT vendor community is understanding what that end goal looks like and how they can position themselves to be leaders in the new environment. That’s the reason we identify these IoT Transition Topics.

The 10 IoT Transition Topics

The 10 IoT Transition Topics for 2023 are:

  • Connectivity Management Platforms – Stimulated by changes in the vendor community, there is a trend for CSPs to be more proactive in looking for alternative CMPs. This is also triggered by underlying requirements for CSPs to find low-touch on-boarding suitable for addressing the prepaid IoT connectivity segment. This topic will focus on that need for tiering, demand for multi-sourcing, need for abstraction and single-pane-of-glass platforms and evolving features in the CMP space.
  • eSIM/remote SIM provisioning and localisation – 3-4 years ago multi-country cellular-based IoT connectivity was generally handled via roaming, multi-IMSI, and even by swapping SIM cards. In 3-4 years time it will feature SGP31/32 for IMSI localisation, and some more elegant options for roaming.
  • Cross-optimisation of devices and connectivity and the need for a hardware strategy – Hardware vendors are becoming increasingly assertive in the connectivity space. There are strong motivations for connectivity providers to have a better thought-out approach to devices. Being involved in hardware makes for earlier consideration by enterprises, rather than being something of an after-thought, which is often the case for connectivity. Furthermore eSIM means that devices increasingly ship with an embedded IMSI.
  • 2G/3G to NB-IoT/LTE-M – The time horizon on this one is a bit longer, but there is a process involving 2G/3G switch-off and the roll-out and optimisation of NB-IoT/LTE-M, including roaming agreements. Our view is that these two LPWA technologies will be where IoT cellular connectivity goes to, but we’re still half-way through the transition and some significant challenges remain unresolved, so some guidance is needed.
  • The IoT connectivity stack shifting from infrastructure-based to software-based – This revolves around becoming more scalable, being cloud-native, streamlining processes and so on. In part, this could be characterised by a ‘MNO-to-MVNO’ transition. Really, though, there’s nothing that MNOs can’t also replicate, if they had the motivation. Similar logic applies at different levels of the stack.
  • Regulation – We see a changing regulatory environment, with more data sovereignty and security considerations. Some of today’s approaches for multi-country support and associated architectures used may not work in future.
  • Cloud-to-edge – The pivot to the cloud happened a few years ago, and IoT has just about caught up. The move to the edge to take advantage of superior latency and have more responsive IoT apps, including AI, has yet to really happen. But it will. In part perhaps triggered by 5G. This topic will explore what that means for how IoT is delivered and by whom.
  • The move from platforms to services – This is probably the most nebulous of our IoT Transition Trends. It has become apparent that IoT is not about infinitely scalable platforms. It is actually about providing the services and support to assist enterprises in deploying it. A key theme from our recent research is the extent to which vendors in the IoT need to layer on vertical contextualisation, richer pre-sales and post-sales support and more consultative selling. The Customer Success Manager is a much more prominent part of most IoT vendors’ team nowadays. This theme is also closely linked to the recent changes of approach from major technology vendors to seemingly pivot away from IoT: it’s more vertical than it’s horizontal.
  • Private networks - Much focus in IoT has shifted to mobile private networks (MPN)/private wireless. In this topic we will look at the implications for how IoT is supported, the prognosis for private networks and the implications more broadly for IoT. This topic includes both on-premises and network slicing using the public infrastructure.
  • Sustainability – The ultimate transition is to zero carbon. The approach of the technology vendors and their customers to this will certainly be a significant part of our research in 2023, building on the already significant body of published research that we have in this space.

Transforma Insights will focus a large proportion of its research this year on the 10 IoT Transition Topics mentioned above, systematically discussing the themes. We will also combine all of those themes, plus many others, to provide our prognosis for the overall IoT space over the next 5-10 years.

Sponsorship opportunities

The Transforma Insights team will use the 10 IoT Transition Topics as a key input to its research agenda, publishing Key Topic Insight Reports and other publications to the subscribers to our multi-client Advisory Service. We also plan to produce a set of public content, available for free, around the themes, any of which has associated sponsorship opportunities for technology vendors, allowing them to associate their brand with Transforma Insights’ external discussion of the topic through short reports, events and social media campaigns.

Commenting, Matt Hatton said: “In previous years we have supporting numerous clients with marketing support in the form of white papers, webinars, workshops and speaking engagements. This year we are being more proactive and structured on what we do in that area. The IoT Transition Topics are some of the most important things happening in IoT and represent the best opportunities to establish thought-leadership and brand awareness in fast-changing markets. Therefore, we are providing our vendor clients with the opportunity to sponsor the public content related to any of the IoT Transition Topics.

The sponsorship of one of the IoT Transition Topics will comprise the following:

  • Position Paper – This 6-8 page document will summarise Transforma Insights’ perspectives on the topic. This will be based on an extract from a full length (~15-20 page) Key Topic Insight Report on the subject that will be published on the Transforma Insights Advisory Service exclusively for subscribers. The sponsor would have its branding on the Position Paper and 1-2 pages at the end of the report to promote its products and services, the pages of which would be in the client’s format, whereas the rest of the report would be Transforma Insights’.
  • Virtual Briefing – A 1-hour public online briefing featuring Transforma Insights as the moderator and a speaker on the topic. Plus the sponsor, and, depending on availability, we or the client would invite an appropriate guest. The focus would be on the overall Transition Topic. Transforma Insights would organise and host the webinar.
  • Social Media Campaign – Transforma Insights will heavily promote the Transition Topic via LinkedIn and Twitter, as well as mail outs to our customer base. We also have good arrangements with third parties with large social media presence in IoT who would further promote the material.
  • News Article – As part of the sponsorship we would also use our great contacts with IoT-related news services to place an article focused on the topic, and mentioning the sponsor. The focus of this would inevitably be the newsworthy topic rather than being explicitly promoting the sponsor’s products.
  • Live Conference Workshop – This element would involve a dedicated live in-person session as part of an IoT conference, or perhaps a pre-conference workshop. Most likely 1.5-2 hours in length and focused on the specific topic. It could be a run as an open public session or a closed-door workshop, depending on the theme and audience.

Contact us

If you would like to know more about the sponsorship opportunities associated with these 10 IoT Transition Topics, please contact our Sales Team.