The percentage of roaming revenue generated by the Internet of Things could skyrocket over the next few years to hit as much as 50 percent by 2020, a new survey from ROCCO and Uni-fi Roaming Solutions (UROS) found.
According to a survey of 96 mobile network operators in 81 countries conducted by ROCCO in February and March, roaming IoT currently accounts for an average of 5 percent of MNO revenues. That figure, however, is widely expected to increase. Respondents indicated that by 2020, an average MNO can expect at least 20 percent to 30 percent of revenues to be generated by roaming IoT. For some, participants anticipated that figure could reach upwards of 50 percent.
Overall, just under half of MNOs expect inbound IoT roaming traffic revenues will match those of traditional roaming by the start of the next decade.
And interest is high across the board. Nearly 70 percent of respondents said both inbound and outbound roaming IoT traffic was either interesting or very interesting.
It’s no surprise given recent studies on the IoT. Markets and Markets in September indicated the Internet of Things telecom services market is expected to hit $17.67 billion by 2021. And Ericsson last year forecasted the IoT would surpass mobile phones as the largest category of connected device by 2018 and reach a total of nearly 16 billion connected devices by 2021.
More on the challenges of both inbound and outbound IoT roaming can be found in ROCCO and UROS’s full report here.