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Sprint Business President: Prepare for billions of IoT devices

Jan Geldmacher, President of Sprint Business, estimates almost 50 billion IoT devices by 2021

During a keynote session at the Enterprise IoT Summit, Jan Geldmacher, president of Sprint Business, the carrier’s enterprise- and industrial-facing business, said that the number of registered IoT devices in the U.S is around 64.1 million.

“Connected devices to the internet are expected to grow over 700% by the year 2021. We are just at the very start. The IoT market is growing exponentially,” the executive said.

Geldmacher said that among the early adopters would be industries including energy and utilities, asset management, automotive, retail and payment, security, transportation and healthcare.

“Energy companies and utilities are driving the adoption of IoT devices. One of the reasons for this is regulation. Utilities are forced to implement meters to read consumption in real-time,” he said.

Geldmacher explained that utilities are also implementing smart grids, which also boost the adoption of IoT technology. He said IoT devices allow companies to obtain greater efficiencies, competitive advantages and the ability to deliver new capabilities. “IoT allow firms to do things better and also to do new things. With IoT, companies can improve business process efficiencies and obtain energy efficiencies. Companies can also implement new business models and enhance customer services,” the executive said.

Geldmacher also said that 94% of businesses are seeing some type of ROI when implementing IoT solutions. The executive said that IT executives believe the implementation of IoT will allow the firms to improve operational efficiencies, boost production, improved safety, security and monitoring and enhance customer service.

“IoT is only possible with an ecosystem of companies. There’s nothing that a company can do alone. Network operators need to work with system integrators. We also need to partner with artificial intelligence companies for IoT,” the executive added. Other key players in the IoT ecosystem are software vendors, hardware manufacturers, application platform providers and wireless modules providers.

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