Why IoT is growing rapidly

1 March 2021


After years of steady uptake, the Internet of Things (IoT) is now poised to cross over into mainstream use. Around the world, the number of IoT-connected devices is projected to increase to 25.1 billion devices by 2025[1], buoyed by the rise of smart city initiatives and surging Industry 4.0 deployments.

At the same time, the ongoing deployment of commercial 5G networks is amplifying the impact of IoT deployments. As organisations leverage the capabilities of IoT with the capabilities and performance of 5G, connected devices are driving an accelerated pace of innovation across a broad swathe of industries. By intelligently connecting millions of sensor devices, companies will be able to monitor and automate capabilities to improve efficiencies in facilities, transportation, utilities and others industries. 

5G accelerating IoT adoption


One topic that comes up early in any conversation around IoT deployments would undoubtedly be connectivity. Though many of the initial IoT initiatives relied on non-cellular radio technology to establish wireless connectivity across manufacturing compounds, commercial complexes or campuses, deployments based on cellular technologies such as Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) and CAT-M have been growing steadily[1].

And as IoT deployments surge, businesses are looking to next-gen 5G mobile networks. 5G Network is based on the same design technologies but improved to provide with superior bandwidth, ultra-low latency, and support for massive device density of up to a million devices per square kilometre  This may include powering real-time video streams from security cameras, to controlling high-speed aerial drones used by emergency services. as an attractive enabler for a growing number of use cases.

The various benefits of 5G coverage will surely speed up IoT deployments, as businesses adopt it to gain a competitive advantage. Much like how technologies such as the PC and the smartphone have revolutionised personal computing and pervasive Internet access, 5G will likely expand the scope and power of IoT applications to come.


Connecting the dots


Of course, 5G by itself will not solve all the challenges inherent to IoT deployments. Existing issues such as device management and the ability to easily review collected data must still be addressed through a device platform of choice. To derive the maximum benefits from their IoT deployments, businesses must also address the challenge of integrating disparate IoT solutions into a cohesive network and exchanging data between standalone IoT networks.

While integrating the various systems using in-house resources might appear attractive at first, IT integration projects are known to fail or experience delays. With time-sensitive IoT deployments, a protracted time-to-market might well result in the organisation losing its momentum to competitors. One alternative is to work with a partner versed in both IoT deployments and 5G, picking up the pace of deployments even as integration complexity and cost are kept low.

For instance, StarHub’s 5G IoT platform service is a new one-stop solution that provides IoT connectivity including StarHub’s 5G, device management, and professional services to integrate existing or new IoT systems. With support for other top IoT protocols for seamless integration with legacy or non-5G IoT devices, the managed service can run the entire IoT environment for any organisation – effectively addressing the pain points of existing IoT deployments.


A Future of Massive IoT


We are only just scratching the surface of IoT as we combine the power of 5G with a highly versatile platform for an advantage that is greater than the sum of its parts. From implementations around augmented reality (AR) to specific business verticals such as smart manufacturing, transport, energy, and healthcare, IoT and 5G will enable smarter cities and give businesses the technological capabilities to improve their operations.

Experts think that 5G will cause explosive growth of IoT devices in the market[1]. With a managed platform to bridge multiple IoT platforms and networks, support for a massive number of devices, and an integrated view of all IoT deployments, businesses can focus fully on innovation. And as more businesses turn to IoT, expect a more diverse IoT ecosystem with greater intelligence and capabilities.

A future of massive IoT is almost upon us; with so much at stake, the onus is businesses to act earlier rather than later.

Contact us to learn more about StarHub’s 5G IoT platform and how it can help businesses roll out their own IoT deployment.




[1] https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/12/21/2148872/0/en/Worldwide-Industry-for-IoT-Middleware-to-2025-Manufacturing-Expected-to-Have-High-Potential-Growth.html

[2] https://www.globenewswire.com/news-release/2020/03/24/2005280/0/en/The-World-s-Cellular-IoT-Industry-2020-and-Beyond-LTE-M-and-NB-IoT-to-Drive-Future-Growth.html

[3] https://www.straitstimes.com/tech/up-to-four-5g-networks-being-planned-to-secure-singapores-digital-future

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