ABI Research released a report on Monday defining the top tech trends to watch in 2020. New and developing tech trends are constantly pervading the enterprise, but the report identifies the trends that won’t actually deliver.
Technologies including continuous intelligence, 5G deployment in Massive Machine Type Communication (mMTC), and the shared economy will see progress in 2020, but the same can’t be said for the Internet of Things (IoT) platform market, unlicensed propriety low-power wide-area (LPWA) networks, and edge technology, the report found.
SEE: Tech Predictions For 2020: More must-read coverage (TechRepublic on Flipboard)
The report identified 54 Technology Trends to Watch in 2020–35 trends that will define the tech market and 19 that won’t come to fruition.
“After a tumultuous 2019 that was beset by many challenges, both integral to technology markets and derived from global market dynamics, 2020 looks set to be equally challenging,” said Stuart Carlaw, chief research officer at ABI Research, in the press release.
3 trends falling in 2020
1. The IoT platform market
IoT tech has proliferated the enterprise and will continue in 2020: Gartner predicted 20.4 billion IoT devices will be in use by the end of 2020. With so many IoT platform suppliers on the market, industry experts have long predicted that suppliers will begin consolidating, with large companies forgoing partnerships with small-scale IoT vendors and integrating IoT production into its own operations.
However, the report revealed that the idea of consolidation is being pushed further into the future, since new suppliers will inevitably join the market.
“For many years, there have been predictions that the IoT platform supplier market will begin to consolidate, and it just won’t happen,” said Dan Shey, vice president of enabling platforms at ABI Research, in the release. “The simple reason is that there are more than 100 companies that offer device-to-cloud IoT platform services and for every one that is acquired, there are always new ones that come to market.”
SEE: Top 10 IT trends of the last 20 years (TechRepublic)
2. Unlicensed proprietary LPWA will not merge with licensed open standards
Standard 5G and LTE wireless network technologies are being widely commercialized because of its high reliability, low latency, and long-term availability. While major LPWA players like Orange, KPN, SoftBank, and Sigfox have seen some success in areas such as emergency communication, the combining of standard and unlicensed proprietary networks is far in the future, according to the report.
“The two cannot be reconciled at the standards level, for the premium that cellular commands stems from the cost of its license, and the control that its owners have over their blocks of spectrum, providing a secure, managed, quality of service-based guarantee to IoT customers,” said Adarsh Krishnan, M2M, IoT and IoE principal analyst at ABI Research, in the release.
3. Edge will not overtake cloud
While many organizations are using edge computing to handle workloads, moving to the edge doesn’t mean the cloud is out, the report found.
“The accelerated growth of the edge technology and intelligent device paradigm created one of the largest industry misconceptions: edge technology will cannibalize cloud technology,” said M2M, IoT & IoE analyst Kateryna Dubrova in the release. “In fact, in the future we will see a rapid development of edge-cloud-fog continuum, where technology will complement each other, rather than cross-cannibalize.”
While these three trends won’t gain ground in the new year, the report did identify a few that will.
3 trends that will grow in 2020
1. Continuous intelligence
Continuous intelligence, or the ability to analyze and gain insights from IoT data, has grown with the release of streaming analytics and streaming technologies, the report found. This trend will continue in 2020 as more organizations extract value from real-time insights.
“The concept of continuous intelligence will be consolidating in the IoT analytics market, enabling more advanced analytics in near-real time,” Dubrovain said in the release. “ABI Research predicts greater adoption of CI technologies, which will elevate IoT data analytics beyond traditional operational level (maintenance and control), but we will also observe a greater impact on strategic planning and organizational change.”
2. mMTC will sustain only a handful of chipset manufacturers
5G deployment began in 2019 and will reach new levels of performance in 2020, especially with Release 16, the report found.
Release 15 supported mobile broadband, ultra-reliable low-latency communications, and mMTC; Release 16 will enhance that support and pave the way for standards in connected cars, smart factories, and more, reported Cho Mu-Hyun on ZDNet.
mMTC capabilities will eventually enable the connection of up to 1 million devices per square kilometer, allowing for large dense wireless sensor networks. With the power mMTC presents, chipset manufacturers are eager to jump onboard; however, only few will deliver, the report found.
“This resulting race saw 17 baseband vendors emerge, but only four different ones currently supply most of the hundreds of LTE-M and NB-IoT products now available. HiSilicon, MediaTek, Qualcomm, and RDA (UNISOC) dominate,” said Jamie Moss, M2M, IoT & IoE research director at ABI Research, in the release.
“And this situation will only compound as we move toward Release 16 and the full coexistence of LTE-M and NB-IoT with 5G NR, i.e., the ‘official’ start of the mMTC market. Nothing succeeds like success and only those with strong early adoption, regardless of slow initial sales, will be there to enjoy the boom years to come,” she added.
3. China will drive the sharing economy 2.0
The sharing economy is defined as “a peer-to-peer activity of acquiring, providing, or sharing access to goods and services,” reported ZDNet’s Bob Violino. Common examples of the sharing economy include Uber and Airbnb, which make up the sharing economy 1.0. However, a new wave of the sharing economy is predicted for 2020, the report found, and it’s led by China.
“China is showing the world what the next phase of the sharing economy will look like: Shared powerbanks,” Shey said in the release. “The newer applications in the more ‘connected’ version of the sharing economy will continue to grow across the world, albeit at a more measured pace than seen in China.”
For more, check out ABI Research’s full list of tech trends and The 5 emerging technologies worth investing in for 2020 on TechRepublic.
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