The IoT gateway market is expected to register a CAGR of 12% during the forecast period 2021 - 2026. IoT gateways play a crucial role in supporting sensors and devices connect to an intermediary source that aggregates data and then sends it off for further processing and analytic. Over the next five years, edge deployments will become a key component of IoT integration and working with connected devices. Edge Computing is specifically designed to overcome the challenges of IoT connectivity. Users will be able to connect simple devices and sensors directly to an edge ecosystem, given that the edge network is close enough and can support the user's requirements. Further, edge and 5G can act as the new IoT Gateway, where the systems are designed for supporting connected devices and M2M communication and are capable of advanced data ingestion and processing.
- Growth of application-specific MCUs and flexible Soc-type designs is driving the market. Many IoT applications tend to handle sensitive data. Such as data used for billing, for example, needs to be protected from cyber hacking. Similarly, medical devices need to maintain the privacy of individuals. Currently, OEMs need an uncomplicated way to introduce connectivity to both new and existing designs. To facilitate the accelerated design of both simple and embedded control gateways, a player such as TI offers the TM4C129x family of IoT MCUs. The TM4C129x MCUs simplify IP connectivity for gateways by integrating several key technologies. With its hardware-based cryptographic acceleration and TLS/SSL stack, the TM4C129x MCUs enable OEMs to implement robust security mechanisms with low overhead to minimize threats and maximize data protection.
- Further, building electronic circuits within a system-on-chip (SoC) has benefits such as improving compatibility and efficiency while reducing space requirements and speed of development. IoT with SoC, including wireless technology, helps to prevent implementation challenges such as network incompatibility, integration, and reliability issues. Chip manufacturers are producing SoCs with different types of inbuilt network connectivity technologies. These conform to various commonly used wireless protocols such as Bluetooth, ZigBee, Wi-Fi, etc. Players such as STMicroelectronics has introduced a LoRa system-on-chip (SoC) named STM32WLE5 in January 2020, for connecting smart devices to the IoT using long-distance wireless connections. The SoC is designed for allowing product developers to create devices like remote environmental sensors, meters, trackers, and process controllers to help manage energy and resources efficiently.
- The emerging development of smart cities drives the market. Many cities are challenged by aging infrastructure, increased air pollution and traffic congestion, spiraling energy prices, and scarcity of natural resources. According to the Consumer Technology Association, the worldwide spending on smart city development is expected to reach USD 34.35 billion, by 2020. While using low-power wireless technologies, IoT gateways can communicate with hundreds of sensors in a given area. With its proven reliability, simple deployment, and omnipresent reach, cellular is an ideal technology to connect IoT applications.
- For instance, Actility provides a unique LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) platform for cities, using IoT platforms to enable new services. Due to its long-range low-power network for IoT, the city authorities can connect countless battery-powered things into a single network, which allows them to collect data from parking sensors, environmental monitoring equipment, flood detection, etc. The data, when fed to centralized intelligent systems it makes recommendations to optimize city service management. Further, the solutions provided by other players and their strategies for new innovative deployment for IoT gateway in the smart city will help to drive the market.
- Moreover, due to the recent outbreak of COVID-19, IoT investment and deployments are slowing down. However, with major disruptions in global healthcare and supply chains, governments, hospitals, insurers, and logistics providers are having to react quickly for a more connected world that could help better address the current crisis and mitigate future ones.
- There needs to be synergy among various government departments, control measures, and the tool to identify and track the targets efficiently. According to Wipro, the IoT gateway can be used to get the data from the tracking device and used to track the targets. The target can be tagged with a GPS device and will be geo-fenced to track and record the target movements. Vendors are taking the opportunity in the COVID-19 pandemic situation by offering emerging technology-enabled solutions to healthcare organizations. For instance, in the starting week of April 2020, SPHCC (Shanghai Public Health Clinical Center) announced that they are using Bluetooth IoT products and solutions provider Cassia Network's gateways, together with VivaLNK's medical wearable sensors to monitor COVID-19 patients.
Key Market Trends
Retail Segment to Witness a Significant Growth
- The Internet of Things (IoT) is leading the impact of digitization with new trends being set by cognitive computing, distributed commerce, augmented reality, and possible use of drones in the retail sector. All the information sensed and gathered by the sensors is transmitted to the gateways. It is the gateway that is accountable for the global addressing of each store by making use of ofIPv4 addresses. Further, each gateway is allotted a coverage area, wherein each store has been given an IP address, thus facilitating efficient identification of products being sold at that store through the cloud.
- In January 2020, Microsoft surveyed 168 decision-makers across retail enterprise organizations to gain a better understanding of the current state of the IoT ecosystem in retail, where 87% of those surveyed consider IoT as critical to their business success. In the United States, the IoT gateway is often utilized for security and store analytics.
- Further to improve the customer experience, the integration of IoT gateway is mostly used in Digital Signage, Intelligent Vending Machines, Contactless Checkout POS (point-of-sale). Further creating new channels and revenue streams, the adoption of Kiosk and Responsive Retail is preferred. For the optimization of supply chain operations, the adoption of IoT Gateway is used to secure platform powering a range of smart solutions, and the high usage of RFID assisted inventory movement and tracking. Players provide the IoT Gateway architecture based on the retailer's demand.
- For instance, Intel provides the solution known as Intel IoT Retail Gateway Reference Design for re-architecting traditional vending machines into highly-capable, Internet-connected devices that can offer engaging consumer experiences, drive business transformation, support new transaction models, and reduce operating costs.
- Further customer engagement with sensor-enabled shopping carts is catering a growth to the IoT gateway market. The sensor-enabled shopping cart is a technique adopted by most of the retail merchandisers. eInfochips Private Limited offers Snapbricks IoT Gateway Framework, which provides solutions, like energy-saving using sensors, the path to purchase mapping, food freshness monitoring, vending process optimization, remote asset diagnostics and preventive maintenance, in-store navigation using BLE Beacons, etc., that further helps improve the retail business processes and customer engagement.
- Furthermore, Edge gateways deliver blanket wireless coverage for Bluetooth beacons and sensors, collecting data from thousands of edge devices per second. Stores, like Target and CVS, have installed beacons, wireless devices that communicate with customers' Bluetooth-enabled cell phones while they shop. An average-sized Target store is estimated to employ 1,000 beacons.
- Moreover, in January 2020, Rigado announced that it had achieved Amazon Web Services (AWS) Retail Competency status, where Rigado's IoT Edge-as-a-Service gateway platform is designed to allow retail solution providers to rapidly develop and deploy applications utilizing Bluetooth sensors and monitors for loss prevention, inventory management, and employee safety.
- Further players are collaborating with software solution providers enhancing the growth of the market. In April 2020, Axiomtek announced its collaboration with Intuiface to deliver advanced interactive signage and kiosk all-in-one solutions supported by the latest in technologies, including IoT gateway, made with abundant interfaces for easy integration and allowed for gratifying content to be delivered quickly and purposefully to achieve better overall customer experience.
- Further, in European countries with increasing IoT connection in retail, market growth is estimated to rise in the coming years substantially. According to the Microsoft survey, in Europe, the implementation of IoT gateway is mostly preferred for store analytics and supply chain/store optimization. It is, thus, increasing the demand for IoT gateway integration.
North America Accounts for Significant Share
- North America is anticipated to cater to a significant share in the IoT gateway market. Advancement in research and development in the IoT space to get smaller, cheaper, and improved devices are one of the significant factors contributing to the growth of the IoT gateway market in North America.
- Further, according to a study at Stanford University and Avast, North American homes have the highest density of IoT devices of any region in the world. Notably, 66% of homes in the region have at least one IoT device. Additionally, 25% of North American homes boast more than two devices. The average household in the region would have an average of 9 devices by 2022, and nearly half (48%) of total devices and connections will be video capable. This penetrates the growth of IoT gateway in the region.
- Players are focused on innovating a gateway solution that can integrate more sensors. In March 2020, Monnit Corporation announced the release of the ALTA Advanced Edge Gateway. The new gateway aggregates data from feature-rich Monnit Wireless Sensors to any cloud provider, such as Amazon AWS. Coupling the prominent MQTTS protocol and the IoT's broadest sensor range, Monnit's Edge Gateway fulfills a vital IoT mission of making deployments more agile and productive. Its one gateway accommodates up to 100 wireless sensors. Also, this new Edge Gateway supports Monnit's line of 80+ ALTA long-range wireless sensors.
- Further, building facility managers are gradually leveraging multi-sensor IoT hardware to augment their existing building management systems and offer new value-added services to improve occupant experience and reduce operational expenses in the United States. Sequans addresses the opportunities of this market, as a leading provider of modules that are optimized for smart building and smart home IoT.
- In April 2020, Sequans Communications S.A. announced that Samea Innovation is using Sequans' Monarch GM01Q module to provide the LTE connectivity for its new Sensoriis Smart Building Wireless Sensor. The Sensoriis device is an advanced IoT solution designed to monitor, collect, and analyze building status information. Sensoriis combines the LTE-M connectivity provided by Sequans along with Zigbee, which acts as a gateway and Bluetooth 5.0 that enables set up of Sensoriis using any smartphone.
- Further, North American suppliers dominate the cellular IoT gateway and router market, with the largest suppliers worldwide being Cradlepoint, Cisco, Sierra Wireless, CalAmp, and Digi International. It is mostly driven by deployments in the public safety, transportation, and retail sectors. The region has also been subject to significant merger and acquisition activity in recent times.
- In July 2019, Lantronix, Inc. announced that it acquired all of the business of Maestro & FALCOM Holdings Limited (Maestro) by acquiring 100% of the issued share capital of each of its operating subsidiaries. The addition of Maestro's product portfolio and industry-leading cellular connectivity technology is the perfect complement to the Lantronix portfolio of IoT solutions. This acquisition allows Lantronix to offer the best in class products in wired Ethernet, Wi-Fi, LoRa/LPWAN, and now in cellular environments as well.
- IoT America created a new consumption model that efficiently brings the Internet of Things directly to the vast rural areas of the United States and allows agriculture producers, small businesses, and municipalities to quickly rollout customized networks and actionable field solutions. For the deployment, in March 2019, IoT America and Kerlink collaborated to deploy IoT solutions across rural America. IoT America will be provided by Kerlink's outdoor Wirnet Stations and Wirnet iBTS Compact LoRaWAN gateways, indoor Wirnet iFemtoCell gateways, and the company's core network and advanced-operations suite.
The IoT gateway market is fragmented, and the degree of fragmentation is expected to accelerate during the forecast period. To make the most of the opportunities, market vendors are focusing more on the growth prospects in the fast-growing segments by doing a collaboration, innovation, mergers, etc., while also maintaining their positions in the slow-growing segments. Key players are Cisco Systems, Inc., Advantech Co., Ltd. Recent developments in the market are -
- April 2020 - Laird Connectivity announced the upcoming Sentrius MG100 Micro-Gateway, which simplifies bridging Bluetooth sensor data to the cloud. It is powered by the Pinnacle 100 cellular modem, where the MG100 Micro-Gateway combines long-range Bluetooth 5 (Nordic nRF52840 silicon) and LTE-M/NB-IoT (Sierra HL7800/Altair ALT1250) in a small form factor IoT micro-gateway. This unique wireless combination enables new use cases for long-range Bluetooth sensors to bridge sensor data to the MG100 Micro-Gateway, then up to the cloud, all in a low-cost and straightforward architecture.
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