According to a new research report from the IoT analyst firm Berg Insight, around 5.9 million people in Europe were using connected care solutions at the end of 2016.
The figure refers to users of traditional telecare, next-generation telecare and telehealth solutions in the EU28+2 countries.
Until 2022, Berg Insight forecasts that the number of connected care users will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.7 percent to reach 16.5 million.
Traditional telecare is currently the largest and most mature of the three market segments, but the next-generation telecare and telehealth market segments are expected to have a higher growth rate while traditional telecare is being phased out. Berg Insight expects that traditional telecare will be overtaken by next-generation telecare as the largest segment of the connected care market with a forecasted 8.1 million users in 2022. However, traditional telecare will follow with 6.2 million us ers and telehealth with 4.0 million users at the end of the forecast period.
The European connected care industry is facing major changes that will reshape the competitive environment for solution vendors and service providers during the coming years. One of the main developments is the digitalization of telephone networks that already has started in several countries. Massive replacements of telecare equipment will be needed due to that analogue devices no longer function reliably when the PSTN infrastructure is modernized. At the same time, the market is opening up to new types of solutions that can advance the delivery of care to the next level. This includes next-generation telecare systems that support functionalities such as remote visits and video communication.
Anders Frick, Senior Analyst, Berg Insight, said:
“There is a strong need for solutions that enable social care and healthcare services to be delivered more cost-efficiently without compromising the quality of care”.
He adds that this need will only grow stronger in the future as the European population structure ages and the prevalence of chronic diseases increases.
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Annual shipments of smart electricity meters in Europe will grow by 71 percent in 2017 to reach 23.1 million units, according to a new research report from the M2M/IoT analyst firm Berg Insight.
Growth is driven by accelerating deployments in France, Italy and the UK that coincide with the final phase of the nationwide rollout in Spain. The great majority of the devices deployed in 2017 use powerline communication (PLC). Already in 2018, shipments of PLC smart meters are however expected to start to decline, even as the market remains strong. Instead radio-based technologies like 4G cellular (LTE-M/NB-IoT) and RF mesh will increase their market shares.
Tobias Ryberg, Senior Analyst, Berg Insight, says:
“France and Spain will be the last major countries in Western Europe to deploy pure-play PLC smart metering solutions. Italy is switching to hybrid PLC/RF communication for improved reliability in the second-generation rollout starting this year. The UK and the Netherlands focus on 2G/4G cellular technologies and in Scandinavia, RF mesh networks have come to dominate the market”.
Berg Insight believes that IoT-optimised cellular technologies such as LTE-M/NB-IoT and RF mesh networks will steadily increase their market shares in smart metering over the next 5–10 years. The shift from 2G to 4G/5G will eventually offer improved performance at lower cost. LTE-M will probably be the most suitable alternative for smart electricity metering, while NB-IoT will cover the needs in smart gas and water metering. At the same time, the standardisation of RF mesh networks by the Wi-SUN Alliance and other standard bodies has a good potential for establishing a thriving ecosystem for connected products in the smart cities and smart energy markets.
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According to a new report from the M2M/IoT analyst firm Berg Insight, the installed base of smart gas meters in Europe will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 37.8 percent between 2016 and 2022 to reach 62.0 million units at the end of the period.
Deployments of smart gas meters on the European market accelerated in 2017 as the number of installed devices reached 17.3 million.
The growth is mainly driven by nationwide rollouts in France, Italy, the Netherlands and the UK. Italy is the largest market with annual demand projected to peak at more than 5 million units towards the end of the decade. France entered the mass-rollout phase in 2017 and the UK market is expected to take off in 2018. In the Netherlands, the full-scale rollout is already underway and will continue until the early 2020s.
The European smart gas meters use a variety of communication methods, including fixed RF networks and local interfaces to master electricity meters. Short-range radio communication using the 169 MHz frequency band is the de-facto industry networking standard in France and Italy where smart gas meters are deployed independently of smart electricity meters. In the UK and the Netherlands, local wired or wireless interfaces are used for transmitting readings via the customer’s smart electricity meter. Several vendors have performed successful trials of using NB-IoT networks for connecting smart gas meters in the past year.
Tobias Ryberg, Senior Analyst, Berg Insight, said:
“Berg Insight expects that smart gas metering will become one of the first high-volume applications for NB-IoT. The combination of low data volumes and the need for 10+ year battery operation is an ideal match”.
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A new report from the IoT analyst firm Berg Insight ranks connected pallets as the most promising greenfield application enabled by the new wave of cellular and non-cellular LPWA technologies.
The global installed base of pallets used for transportation is estimated to around 10 billion units.
Tobias Ryberg, Senior Analyst and author of the report, says:
“With an average sales price of US$ 10 per unit for regular pallets, the cost of adding connectivity can be justified by increasing efficiency in many logistics operations. The ability to track pallets can also contribute to extending their lifespan which is currently around 2 years”.
He adds that connected pallets are being evaluated by several large industry players right now who could proceed with large-scale deployments in a very near future.
Smart cities and smart agriculture are other potential mass-volume market segments where LPWA technologies will be a key enabler. Berg Insight however believes that there are significant barriers that must be overcome before they can scale: moving from today’s limited smart cities demonstration projects to city-wide deployments will be costly, complex and time-consuming. Smart agriculture is in an even earlier stage of development where the initial focus lies on proof-of-concept and application prototyping.
“Today’s top IoT devices – the connected car and the smart meter – needed more than a decade to mature”, says Mr Ryberg.
“The smart city and the intelligent farm will need at least that much time to grow from vision to reality”.
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