100's of M2M / IoT blog posts.

2016 predictions for the wild world of IoT

by Larry Bellehumeur   |  Jan 04, 2016  

One of my favourite parts about predictions is that if you make them vague enough, they can always come true.  I love how economist and stock analysts on Bloomberg all pretend that they called a particular stock price climb or macro-economical event, only to find out that they didn't really say anything intelligent or useful at all when you "roll the tape". 

So, that being said and with respect to IoT, what should we look forward to in 2016? 

Better looking, yet not quite as smart, wearables

I recently wrote a blog post that included a section on how the first generation of wearables, while being incredibly functional, were mostly kind of ugly.  A great example is the Garmin Vivoactive.  While I love Garmin's products, this one definitely did not win any design awards.  In fact, I once heard it compared to the Pontiac Aztek (yes, that same car used famously by Walter White in Breaking Bad), as it was functional, yet ugly. Look for yourself:

Garmin and Aztek

So, while they are getting better looking in the newest generation, they better do it quickly.  They can also sacrifice some of the information, as I don't need to know half of what they tell me. 

2016 is the year that everything gets smart...

I have written in the past about how clothing, appliances and garage door openers are all getting smarter.....I think this continues.  The continued introduction of lower cost Wi-Fi modules, as well as upcoming lower cost LTE modules means that they will find their way into more than ever before. 

Mergers pick up further

2015 saw mergers in the platform and hardware side of the IoT market but I think that will really accelerate.  As well, I think you will see more "pure-play IoT" companies be taken public, as there is appetite from the investment community for companies that can provide exposure. 

Carriers finally get in the IoT game

Sure, carriers are involved in the world of IoT today, I mean, they do supply the cellular networks that carry a lot of this IP traffic.  However, I think we will see them get more involved in the overall solutions themselves, attempting to recognize more of the overall revenue pie.  This new philosophy will allow them to utilize some of their strengths....their robust billing engines, their massive sales forces, their great breadth of retail locations, their strong cash flow (to offer financing) and their (often under-utilized) remote technician fleets. 

The Bottom Line

There.....I managed to write this column in such a generic way that I can either claim to be right (regardless of the actual outcome) or I have provided myself with enough plausible deniability in case I am completely wrong.  I am sure of one thing...too many people have staked too much of their growth plan on IoT for it not to be an interesting year.