Over 25 Billion Connected Devices by 2020

Let's face it, we've exceeded 100% adoption of mobile devices across the US population. There's still a lot of innovation happening with the smartphone, but I'm constantly asked, "What's the hottest area in Mobile today?" We're beyond just being connected with that little smartphone in our hands, we've got many more devices to connect! GSMA has already predicted that there will be over 25 Billion connected devices by 2020 with at least 10 Billion connected mobile devices.

What's the greatest growth area in mobile today? What's next on the horizon for mobility?

The answer is simple, Internet of Things (IoT)

Let's first take a step back and put this in perspective.

Do you have a thermostat? Do you wish you had turned off your central air or heat before you left your home this morning? Or before you went out of town for a business trip or vacation?

In 2011, I started wondering this myself. I started researching home automation and specifically which devices in my home I could connect and manage from outside my home. In 2011, there weren't a lot of players in the market and the options were quite limited. I came across Z-Wave, a protocol where I could purchase IoT devices from multiple manufacturers (not a closed system) to control my thermostat, lights, deadbolt locks, and more. What sold me on Z-Wave was the fact that I could buy devices that didn't require a monthly subscription cost. Once I purchased the equipment, I only needed to provide an open Internet connection to make it work.

I purchased 4 pieces of equipment:

Lighting can be easily controlled with Z-Wave, but I made a conscious decision not to purchase any Z-Wave lighting controllers. I had already replaced all of the light bulbs in my house with energy saving light bulbs. My priorities were 1) Saving money on my biggest utility expense that I could control (A/C & Heat), and 2) Security (knowing that my door was locked and being able to lock or unlock my door remotely). Side benefit from the Z-Wave deadbolt was that I was able to program the hub to send me an email (or text) each time my front door was locked or unlocked. Another feature was the ability to setup my Infrared camera to take snapshots each time my door was opened.

My drivers to install smart home automation were:

  1. Save Money
  2. Security

Fast forward to 2016, we now have large ecosystems and plenty of players in the market.

Source: Rob Prudhomme, Gartner Consulting, presented at the Wireless Technology Forum on February 18, 2016

Is smart home automation and smart energy commonplace today?

Short Answer, No.

  • Why is this?
  • What will drive smart energy?
  • When will we see common adoption of smart energy and home automation?

A set of very smart panelists set out to answer these questions on February 18, 2016 at the Wireless Technology Forum.


Watch here to find out:

Or download the GSMA Connected Living Report