Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

US market praised for M2M dynamism by GSM Association

Iain Morris
September 25, 2014
The US has quickly emerged as the largest and most advanced M2M market in the world, with M2M accounting for one in ten mobile connections in the country, compared with just one in 20 in Europe and one in 100 in Africa.

The finding is part of new research published by the GSM Association (GSMA), which says there were 35 million M2M connections in the US at the end of 2013 – 19% of the global total.

M2M connections worldwide are forecast by the GSMA to reach 41 million this year, driven by advanced in the automotive, utilities and oil and gas sectors.

US operators are responding to the burgeoning growth by forming strategic alliances and partnerships with industry specialists to address the needs of various vertical markets.

Even so, the country still has a number of challenges it must overcome if it is to fulfill its M2M potential.

One issue is a lack of standardization, limiting interoperability, causing fragmentation and restricting economies of scale.

There is also a lack of cooperation between the public and the private sectors in many parts of the economy and in some sectors, such as healthcare, there is not enough regulatory clarity.

Despite those challenges, however, the GSMA expects to see growing demand in areas like wearable technology, connected cars and the connected home enabled by M2M connections.

“The US has taken a leading role in the deployment of next-generation network technologies and is now extending that far-sighted approach to M2M technology, particularly with innovative services in the connected car and connected home spaces,” said Alex Sinclair, the chief technology officer of the GSMA.

“However, without common, interoperable standards and appropriate regulation, the US market cannot reach its full potential,” he added. “We look forward to continuing our work with US operators to help them deliver the full power of M2M technology and the Internet of Things, providing important socio-economic benefits to citizens and businesses alike.”
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