Telcos Must Explore New Revenue Streams With IoT: Study

by CXOtoday News Desk    Jul 28, 2017


The Internet of Things (IoT) market in India holds tremendous potential for telecommunications (telecom) operators, as connectivity is the backbone of IoT deployment. With the country moving towards a digital economy, the growing adoption of Cloud in IoT services, shifting of focus to industrial IoT (IIoT), rising market of M2M communication and increasing trend of wearable technology applications are among the major factors driving the IoT market in India. As a critical player in this value chain, telecom companies can build new revenue streams. Telecom participants will need to step up and move beyond connectivity to play a larger role in this IoT wave to capture the growing market and bring in a transformation in their traditional business model.

“Forming strong partnerships, developing platforms, providing innovative services and adopting a consultative approach toward enterprises for embracing IoT should be the main focus areas for communication service providers to cash in on the IoT opportunity effectively,” said Omkar Malage, Senior Consulting Analyst, Digital Transformation (ICT) Practice, Frost & Sullivan. “The top areas for IoT deployment in India are smart cities, connected healthcare, telematics and connected manufacturing or Industry 4.0.”

The Internet of Things Market in Indiaprovides insights on the Indian IoT value chain, demand in key industry verticals, and opportunities for telecom providers. In addition to a comparison of global trends, it offers an analysis of strategic partnerships, and mergers and acquisitions, enabling regional and international providers to accelerate their growth in the IoT market. Some of the participants covered in the research are Cisco, Reliance Unlimit, Jasper, IBM, Tata Communications, Vodafone, Bharti Airtel, Altizon, and Covacsis.

The IoT market has the potential to reach $16.8 billion by 2021, following speedy implementation of IIoT and government smart city projects. To harness this potential, telecom providers are trying to evolve as end-to-end solution providers while developing capabilities to provide post-sales support across the entire value chain.

In addition to intensifying interest from IT service providers, vertical solution providers, and telecom operators looking to capitalize on the IoT platform, factors driving IoT growth in India include:

- Shift in value potential from connectivity, sensors, and hardware devices to software, platform, analytics, and security;

- High applicability across horizontals like analytics, service provision, security, and consulting in major verticals, such as manufacturing, healthcare, automotive, and government/public sector units;

- Increased demand for vehicle tracking, automatic meter reading, and point-of-sale (POS) solutions;

- Deployment of citizen services as part of the central government’s smart cities initiative;

- Demand for solutions addressing regional challenges, such as energy management, traffic management, and waste management;

-  Growing uptake of low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) connectivity technologies, such as LoRa and SigFox.

IoT growth strategies will evolve as telecom service providers enter new vertical markets, including healthcare, retail, manufacturing and fleet management, and create strategic partnerships with system integrators, IT service providers, and vertical-specific platform and app providers in order to improve time to market, last-mile connectivity, cost efficiencies, and customer service experience.

“Lack of awareness on IoT use cases, poor availability of the talent pool, not enough players in the device ecosystem and data security concerns can prove to be the major inhibitors in growth and development of IoT services in India,” noted Malage.

He said, “Service providers need to conduct more IoT events and hackathons to generate awareness and nurture the talent pool, while focusing on developing partnerships with device vendors, platform providers and application developers. Partnerships are going to be the key in IoT success.”