IoT connectivity survey highlights hardware and commercial flexibility concerns

More than eight out of ten respondents (84%) in Kaleido Intelligence IoT survey, sponsored by Eseye, cited hardware design as the top challenge for initial IoT deployments.

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Eseye has published the findings from the largest-ever IoT survey undertaken in association with Kaleido Intelligence, a leading connectivity market intelligence and consulting firm. Surveying more than 750 IoT professionals, the report examines the crucial factors for IoT connectivity firms to deliver, uncovering the main connectivity pain points for both those currently deploying IoT and those looking into it for the future.

Principal findings from the survey highlighted persistent challenges around hardware design, security, and service availability, and more than 97% of respondents reported that their IoT project had been less than 50% successful.

Key findings:

84% stated hardware design is the number one perceived barrier to deploying IoT

56% of those who have adopted cellular IoT stated maintaining commercial relationships with multiple providers is too complex

51% of those deploying IoT stated connectivity performance and quality of service across international markets is not good enough

48% reported that robust multi-region cellular coverage is lacking

46% stated that permanent roaming restrictions remain a key concern

40% said that the ability to customise with preferential operator contracts (Bring Your Own Contract - BYOC) was lacking in the IoT connectivity ecosystem

Eseye’s Infinity IoT Platform™ launched to address key challenges

In response to the growing challenges highlighted in the report, and for Enterprises to deploy IoT successfully, Eseye recently launched the Infinity IoT Platform™ delivering a single, customisable and scalable network for both today’s and tomorrow’s global IoT deployments. Additionally, Infinity’s Bring Your Own Contract (BYOC) capabilities enable customers to import existing MNO contracts into the platform. This puts organisations in complete control of commercial decision-making and enables them to customise network connectivity options to meet their requirements, while at the same time allowing them to bring negotiated rates from their existing carriers.

Furthermore, Eseye’s AnyNet Federation provides access to over 700 networks around the world and provides the industry’s widest choice of localisation partnerships to help avoid permanent roaming issues. Customers enjoy the highest quality of service available on the market and near-100% global coverage for their IoT deployments.

Underpinning these capabilities, Eseye’s specialist IoT hardware offerings and device design and advisory services uniquely moves customers successfully and rapidly from idea to implementation. Based on the survey results, this in-house technical expertise solves the #1 entry barrier faced by Enterprises deploying IoT for the first time.

Nick Earle, CEO, Eseye, comments: “Historically IoT has been viewed as too complex due to hardware, connectivity and security challenges; this survey shows that these challenges persist today. Frankly, customers deserve greater certainty and lower risk when they undertake IoT deployments. They need to be confident that their IoT project will deliver the expected outcomes and consistent quality of service internationally.”

“To deliver the desired levels of confidence and return on investment from their IoT projects, businesses need to partner with industry specialists that can offer a centralised managed service for their IoT deployment, providing a holistic view of all hardware, connectivity and partnership management requirements in one place. With the new Infinity IoT Platform™ our Enterprise customers are finally able to overcome the major IoT challenges and deploy IoT successfully to meet today’s and tomorrow’s connectivity needs,“ Earle concludes.

Key factors affecting IoT connectivity provider selection

When selecting IoT connectivity providers, the most important criteria cited in the survey were vertical-specific expertise and the facility to offer simplified security policy implementation. The study also found that innovative technologies such as private 5G/LTE are now being seriously considered for both current and future implementations.

Survey respondents said the top two desired capabilities from an IoT connectivity partner were around the provider having an extensive set of MNO partners (66%) and being able to offer hardware and connectivity bundles (49). The survey also found that mitigating permanent roaming issues was high up the agenda. To combat the risks associated with permanent roaming, Eseye has the largest selection of network localisation options available, including Verizon, MTN and Telstra, to help customers deploy IoT around the world.

Although a high percentage of respondents are using eSIMs, many also cited challenges with eSIM providers. Respondents said that reporting and tools to manage over-the-air (OTA) campaigns were lacking. They also noted that the eSIM still required integration with multiple MNOs to obtain visibility and control and that some MNOs and IoT service providers only supported consumer eSIM profiles, not IoT/M2M grade.

Steffen Sorrell, Research Lead at Kaleido Intelligence, added, "Connectivity is key for IoT to deliver value but with multiple contracts, combined with roaming restrictions, it is difficult for organisations to easily control their environment. This is where that commercial flexibility is really needed. Likewise, hardware device design and deployment issues were common, and this is where specialist help is critical - especially for new projects - to handhold the customer from initial design through to full deployment. While eSIM has been touted as the answer to many of these issues, it is not the panacea, as many of our respondents were reporting problems.”

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