Real growth for LPWAN connections

17th July 2018
Alex Lynn

It has been found by IDTechEx Research that there will be 2.7 billion LPWAN IoT connections in 2029, according to its latest report IoT Low Power Wireless Networks and 5G 2019-2029. There are many choices of low power wide area networks (LPWAN) which will be a key connectivity element of the Internet of Things (IoT). 

The choices of LPWAN for users include a licensed spectrum and unlicensed spectrum, the latter being lower power and cheaper in the medium term.

According to IDTechEx, in order to determine the number of IoT connections based on these protocols, now and forecast, one must look beyond the ‘smoke and mirror’ marketing of all these choices, with inconsistent and often inflated numbers of connections loosely given by proponents. This is due to each of the proponents being acutely aware that they need to be seen as the communication protocol of choice before potential adopters sniff loss of confidence and momentum, leading to an inevitable shake out of some of these options.

It is against this hype that IDTechEx Research has conducted its impartial study of LPWAN and related technologies, including wireless local area networks and 5G as comparisons. Based on primary research consisting of interviews with key players, the report IoT Low Power Wireless Networks and 5G 2019-2029 provides a current and forecast data set of LPWAN protocols over 2018-2029 and forecasts of adoption by application for the same period.

By volume, licensed communication technologies such as NB-IoT and LTE will have more connections than unlicensed versions (such as LoRa and Sigfox) by 2021, despite entering the sector later. 

The key benefits of the research in this report are:

  • Current year and forecasts by communication protocol type, for NB-IoT, LTE-M, LoRa and other unlicensed spectrum protocols for 2018-2029
  • Current year and forecasts by application type, including smart cities, asset tracking, smart home and agriculture for 2018-2029
  • Comparison of low power wide area networks, 5G and low power wireless networks – technologies, costs, players, politics and government support
  • Case studies and progress of adoption for each communication type
  • Assessment of each communication type by application

Find the full details of the IDTechEx Research report here.

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