Jan 3, 2018

2017 in Review: Making the IoT work

Looking back over notable, M2M/IoT corporate initiatives in 2017, mobile network operators (MNOs) and technology vendors were the two most active groups in the industry eco-system.

The main feature amongst MNOs was market expansion into new geographies. Sometimes, this happened individually; more often, it took the form of partnering with other network operators. This is a classic growth model for the mobile operator community.

In the technology vendor community, leading initiatives took the form of: acquisitions/investments; partnering (with MNOs, platform providers and system integrators); and, product innovation.

In comparative terms, activity among platform organizations was subdued. And, end-users barely featured among 2017 initiatives. It is likely that these last two data points mask a higher level of internal activity targeting operational scaling and in-house developments as firms solidify their foundations in the IoT market. As an example, Altair, a provider of engineering software to enterprise customers, acquired the Carriots IoT platform. This initiative illustrates the trend to internalize IoT capabilities and has parallels with the earlier acquisition of ThingWorx by PTC [1].