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Rethink Technology Research

LPWAN Revenue Forecast, 2017 to 2023

LPWAN Revenue Forecast, 2017 to 2023

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This report contains detailed forecasts of device connections, module and operator revenue, for all the significant LPWAN technologies.

This report sets the record straight on the true direction of the LPWAN space. Yes, it is growing, but it is not growing at the 90% CAGR rate that some reports would suggest. We conclude that the CAGR in the LPWAN market throughout this period will average 45%, still highly significant.

The report breaks down the key opportunities in LPWAN by use case and then in detail describes which technologies will capture what share of each use case and why.

We have also calculated the effect of licensed technology on the existing LPWAN market. However, the process working through each use case separately shows only a limited number of verticals which cellular LPWAN technologies are appropriate for.

As our research has progressed, technology vendors all expressed inflated views of their own market, across multiple user cases, but we have not been tempted to repeat those claims here and we are clear that previous forecasts have overcooked the market, predicting astronomical figures. Those forecasts are in line with vendor estimates we have been given, but it is clear that there is overlap between the forecasts and some double counting is going on.

The Riot Research forecast shows conclusively that LPWAN is on the verge of take-off, as cellular LPWAN technologies are introduced and will see an expansion of 45% CAGR across the next 7 years, reaching $19.1bn dollars of annual revenue in 2023.

Most of this growth will be supported by the performance of NB-IoT, LTE-M and Wi-SUN technologies. Proprietary LPWAN will have to adjust to the reality of a post cellular LPWAN world, targeting verticals which licensed technology is not suited for.

There will continue to be room in the market for both Licensed and unlicensed LPWANs, however those in the unlicensed technology ecosystem should take seriously the arrival of NB-IoT and LTE-M, and adjust their business to target the available vertical spaces we have identified in the report.

LoRa has seen a recent uptick, which we believe will continue, over the next 7 years. Sigfox’s trajectory remains consistent, and the technology will continue to grow at its current rate – but not accelerate.

Companies in the Wi-SUN ecosystem are set to enjoy continued growth at 20% CAGR, as mesh network technology begins to reach into new verticals and different business models are attempted.

Companies interviewed for this report:

Altair, Cisco, Deutsche Telekom, Ericsson, GSMA, Qualcomm, Huawei, Homerider, Ingenu, Nokia, Orange, Semtech, LoRa Alliance, Sequans, Sigfox, Silver Springs, Telit, U-blox, Weightless, Wi-SUN

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