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Trends from CTIA 2013

by Larry Bellehumeur   |  Aug 04, 2015  

Alcohol consumption

There is a much higher amount of alcohol consumed at Corporate functions at CTIA when the event is hosted in Las Vegas (and New Orleans) versus other places....ok, I'll be more serious.

Cloud, Cloud and more cloud

Speaking of alcohol, a fun drinking game would have been if you had to drink a beer/shot each time you heard or saw the word "cloud" during CTIA.  While cloud-based computing is definitely a trend in all areas of the IT world, it has really taken off in our space.  Not only are companies looking to host your data in their cloud-based service, they are looking to perform data analysis functionality, data filtering services (a.k.a. playing traffic cop), data formatting and aggregation (to be able to be used by a variety of ERP/CRM systems) and much more....all in the cloud.  It was also shocking to see how many hardware-centric companies are now marketing themselves almost exclusively as "cloud-based services" companies.

The big boys are here and here to stay

I remember a few years back......it would have been pretty rare to see many of the large IT companies have significant presence at CTIA.  And....I don't know why they would have back when Blackberry was still in its infancy and iPhone had not yet been invented.  Wireless purchases were strictly done through Procurement and Telecom departments.  However, with the widespread use of smartphones/tablets to access key corporate systems, plus the explosion in the world of M2M/IoT, most big IT companies had a big presence at CTIA.  They dominated much of the speaker lineup, and they had some of the best parties....(thanks, SAP, for your great bash!).

The amount of players in the "M2M" space is getting much bigger

Quick.....name me five M2M based companies.  For most people, I bet that General Motors and GE were not on your list.  However, one of the more obvious trends is the amount of M2M solutions being offered by OEM for their products as both a way to create more recurring revenue and as a way to improve the usability of their products.  In the case of GM, they were showing off how they are using M2M technology to improve the user experience in their Cadillac line (such as through advanced monitoring of your vehicle, enhanced real-time traffic reports and more).  In the case of GE, it was both to show how they are using M2M solutions to improve the usability/reliability of their own products for their customers and it was also to show how they are pushing their "Industrial Internet revolution".

What does this mean?  Well, it means that many companies who have traditionally offered services in certain verticals/markets (such as fleet management and monitoring services) are likely to find that the companies who build the product that they are connecting to (whether it is an automobile, a piece of automation equipment or a large medical device) are about to enter into their space by offering solutions of their own.

M2M and Big Data are being used in the same sentence more often

While there are dozens of different inputs that can be used to provide information into a "big data" systems (everything from financial transactions to web page traffic to walking by a digital sign that counts traffic), it is definitely M2M data that most people are thinking of when you refer to Big Data.  I guess this makes sense as the amount of data that can be generated by one large diesel engine (based on all of the real time sensors) in one day could be more data than people generate in financial transactions in weeks.

Interoperability and standards are coming to the M2M space

I heard a lot about this in my meetings at CTIA.  Companies like IBM and others are starting to get their point across to many companies that they need to start to work closer with them on developing a common standard for all parts of an M2M solution (sensors, device management, data management and integration into key systems) to start to use a common protocol to communicate.

Bottom line

Every year, I keep on being amazed as to how far the world of M2M is progressing.  Many people are starting to see it as the main growth engine for not only the cellular carriers but for companies in the IT services and Enterprise software spaces.  You've come a long way, M2M, but you still have some maturing to do for us to grow like we know we can.

As always, let Novotech know how we can help with your M2M needs, such as antenna selection.  You can visit our web page @ www.novotech.com.  As well, feel free to reach out to me directly ....larry(@)novotech.com.  You can also follow us on Twitter (@NovotechM2M) and you can follow me personally as well (@LBNovotechM2M).