IoT Asia 2017: Asia-Pacific will be a key driver of global IoT innovation

IoT Asia 2017: Asia-Pacific will be a key driver of global IoT innovation

We are increasingly seeing commentaries and reports on how China, India and the Asia-Pacific region will increasingly play a part in driving global technology innovation. At the recent IoT Asia 2017 conference, Singapore’s minister for foreign affairs and minister-in-charge of the country’s Smart Nation initiative, Dr Vivian Balakrishnan,, opened the proceedings by re-iterating his country’s vision in this future.

During the opening keynote, he discussed plans to turn Singapore into a smart nation, including the announcement of the Government Technology Agency of Singapore and the National University of Singapore (see separate article) tie-up with over 10,000 public servants to receive data science training over the next five years to deepen their knowledge.

On top of that, he also presented IoT Asia 2017’s Trailblazer Award to Ambi Labs Limited and G Element Pte Ltd. This award recognises outstanding companies who have made significant contributions to the region’s IoT ecosystem and community.

It’s thought that Asia-Pacific companies will pump in US$58 billion of research and development and spending by the year 2020 into a myriad of solutions across various industries to realise the full potential of IoT (internet of things).

At the same time, Asian governments have embarked on digital and IoT-related transformation roadmaps for their respective economies to be future-ready such as Singapore’s Committee on the Future Economy (CFE), ASEAN’s ICT Masterplan (AIM) 2020, Malaysia’s National IoT Strategic Roadmap and China’s 10-year “Made in China 2025” IoT roadmap. As a result, IoT Asia saw governments, businesses and entrepreneurs exchange views, get fresh insights, and learn from established players and startups on how best to make IoT pragmatic and profitable.

IoT cellular connections in Asia-Pacific to reach 1 billion by 2025

According to the latest Strategy Analytics IoT strategies report “IoT Cellular Connections by Industry Vertical, Bandwidth and Region,” IoT cellular connections will show significant growth out to 2025, with the automotive, utility and security vertical markets driving connections.

Strategy Analytics expects IoT cellular connections to grow to more than 2.4 billion in 2025, with the top three vertical markets (automotive, utilities and security) when combined accounting for over 46% of global IoT cellular connections in 2025. Across the forecast period, the automotive vertical market will not only remain the single largest global consumer of IoT cellular connections, but increase its market share position by 2025.

Andrew Brown, executive director of enterprise and IoT research at Strategy Analytics, said, “With the industry focusing on the path to 5G and low power 3GPP offerings, such as LTE Cat M1 and NB IoT, coupled with a variety of established connectivity platforms, there are lots of choices for cellular connectivity in IoT and the outlook has never been brighter. However, the bewildering array of choices also runs the risk of creating confusion for customers with regard to which technologies should be employed in which use cases,” he added.

Matt Wilkins, senior analyst IoT research at Strategy Analytics, added, “The growth in cellular connections underlines the importance of cellular networks in IoT, with networks not just being used to facilitate simple connections, but increasingly supporting rich data that will enable new and compelling use cases. Asia-Pacific will remain the single largest region across the forecast period, accounting for almost 1 billion connections in 2025; with the top three regions (Asia Pacific, North America, and Western Europe) together accounting for over 75 percent of global cellular IoT connections in 2025.”

IoT Asia 2017

This year’s IoT Asia 2017 theme was around making sense in the connected world, addressing the practical aspect of IoT principally in how businesses, governments and communities can reap the benefits of IoT and how to unlock new business opportunities, as well as monetise IoT applications notwithstanding the current cautious business outlook.

The conference had three tracks on technology, solutions and organisations featuring more than 90 leading industry experts from 11 countries such as Wouter Van Wersch (president and chief executive officer, General Electric ASEAN) and Rob van Kranenburg (founder, The IoT Council, Belgium).

The exhibition saw a wide-ranging suite of technologies and solutions in distinct zones: cybersecurity, robotics, smart cities, wearables, industrial IoT (IIoT), design applications, enablers, and IoT data analytics. There was also a dedicated startup exchange area, institution zone, and a PechaKucha session for visitors to learn more about the IoT ecosystem. There were also three country pavilions: Singapore, France and the UK.

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