Efficiency is on the rise in Asia, as the continent’s leading companies are increasingly integrating Internet of Things (IoT) technology into their operations-Much to the benefit of many Western tech developers aiding them.
Leading the IoT tech charge are several game-changing companies in the space, many of which have had major breakthroughs within the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region.
These companies include Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC), Impinj, Inc. (NASDAQ: PI), and Nokia Corporation (NYSE: NOK), and Edgewater Wireless Systems (TSX-V: YFI) (OTC: KPIFF).
A recent survey by Vodafone declared Asia at the forefront of IoT adoption, with as many as 36% of APAC businesses reporting use of connected devices in 2017-marking a 200% increase from 2013.
The wave of APAC’s IoT integration shows very little signs of slowing, with as many as 70% of APAC retailers investing in IoT solutions for their businesses.
With analysts such as researchers at McKinsey Research predicting the potential global economic impact to reach $4–$11 trillion by 2025, it’s understandable what’s at stake for the pioneers in the space today.
Several companies are contributing to the growth of hardware needed to achieve the goals of IoT integration. These include Silicon Valley microprocessor giant Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC), Finnish cellphone makers Nokia Corporation (NYSE: NOK), and developers at Seattle-based Impinj, Inc. (NASDAQ: PI), which deals in real-time information about an item’s unique identity, location, and authenticity.
For IoT business solutions to flourish, their working environment will rely heavily upon the Wi-Fi and connectivity networking in place. Edgewater Wireless Systems (TSX.V: YFI) (OTC: KPIFF), is making huge gains in that area, with major innovations in 5G and Wi-Fi security and connectivity. Edgewater is gaining significant traction and attention for their patented, game-changing WiFi3[tm] technology.
As APAC businesses show the world the positive benefits of incorporating IoT into their day-to-day operations, their reliance on breakthroughs from Western based tech firms are helping to form mutually-beneficial symbiotic relations between the East and the West.
STREAMLINING WITH INTERNET OF THINGS AND AI
Ahead of the Vodafone survey, there have been a steady stream of intriguing headlines regarding Asian businesses implementing IoT into their operations.
In Singapore, leather goods retailer Goodvine Group streamlined its warehouse so effectively with IoT restructuring, that workers using smartphones can now complete a stock-take of a quarter of all items in less than an hour.
Japanese public bus fleet operators Keifuku Bus, has improved efficiency by dealing with potential driver error in an interesting high-tech way-by equipping their drivers with sensor-laden shirts that detect signs of fatigue.
But the more publicly announced partnerships with companies from the west are the ones that look to become more widespread around the world.
For example, Intel got an early lead in the APAC region a few years ago, including an initiative to boost Singapore companies working with IoT or wearables.
“Intel provides technology assistance and business guidance to the SMEs and startups,” Hari Ramachandran, principal engineer at Intel Singapore, told Tech in Asia. “The assistance takes on many forms, including helping companies identify the right product architecture, clearly defining intellectual property elements, and providing advice on business models.”
RFID chip developers Impinj released the Monza R6-P for the Asia-Pacific region earlier this year, complete with a set of privacy features not available on the Monza R6 chip released in North America-highlighting the heightened demand from APAC businesses ahead of their Western counterparts.
And Finnish-based Nokia most recently announced an alliance with Singapore’s StarHub to co-develop an IoT ecosystem, and launch innovative commercial services in Singapore.
In order to maintain the ubiquitous connectivity required for these IoT devices and solutions to work, much will be demanded of the networks that connect them.
Leading research firm Gartner estimates that by 2020 there will be 26 billion smart devices. To meet that demand, chipmakers are projecting they’ll need to produce 20 billion Wi-Fi chips by 2020, to satisfy what is expected to be a $33.6 billion market.
This is a sector that has perhaps the most room to grow in just the next few years.
EDGEWATER WIRELESS WI-FI PROBLEM SOLVERS
Leading the way in Wi-Fi connectivity solutions is IoT innovator Edgewater Wireless Systems, who design and patent high-density environment Wi-Fi applications. These include high-traffic spaces such as airports, convention centers, stadiums and other public spaces requiring broad access to Wi-Fi.
So far the company has spent approximately $60 million on its technological breakthroughs that include their patented WiFi3[tm] technology used in various products including Aera[tm] brand connection point devices.
WiFi3[tm] sets out to solve the three main issues that impact Wi-Fi performance, namely capacity, density, and interference.
The largest Asian internet market has taken notice of Edgewater’s achievements, when China’s cable industry selected the WiFi3[tm] developers as a finalist for the Cable Innovation Showcase at the ICTC Conference in Hangzhou, China.
As APAC businesses begin to ramp up IoT integration, having the endorsement of the leading Internet Service Providers (ISPs) could lead to a surge in Edgewater’s WiFi3[tm] being used inside the warehouses, factories, and institutions across the continent.
Edgewater Wireless Systems is earning accolades from their peers, as they take their technological breakthroughs outward globally. This up-and-comer company stands to reap the rewards of rising IoT growth, all while aiding businesses to handle the increased network traffic that’s inevitably to follow.
THERE‘S NO LOOKING BACK
Ultimately, the projections themselves for IoT spending continue to climb as new developments hit the market.
Researchers IDC project total IoT spending alone to reach $1.4 trillion by 2021, which in and of itself quite large-However, General Electric predicts investment in the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is expected to top $60 trillion during the next 15 years.
The sweeping acceptance being witnessed in Asia will serve as a catalyst. If Vodafone’s survey is any indication, Asia’s IoT footprint is only going to get larger.
Of the businesses that were surveyed, 77% see IoT as mission-critical to their business; 88% increased their use of IoT solutions in the past 12 months; and 91% believe IoT will have an enormous or sizeable impact on the wider economy in the next five years.
At the end of the day, the IoT is about improving lives and the ways everyone interacts.
As businesses inject IoT solutions into their operations, the need for more innovation will continue to follow.
While it’s still relatively new compared to other more well-known chip makers, Edgewater Wireless is taking incredible strides with their outstanding WiFi3[tm] technology, allowing many IoT innovations to follow suit.
Signals to watch for in the coming IoT revolution will be the continued YoT record revenue growth of companies and their IoT divisions. These will come in areas such as microchip development, RFID, and Wi-Fi connectivity through device technology such as sensors and wearables.