Covid-19 disruption creates market boom for IoT, connected tech

The disruption that Covid-19 has brought about will trigger a boom in the market for Internet of Things, or connected technologies, say industry executives and analysts. They add that companies such as InfosysNSE 0.96 %, Tata Communications, ThoughtWorks, Citius Tech and Hero Electronics are betting on these opportunities.

“IoT has always existed as an automation tool but this disruption will enhance adoption of IoT just like it did for collaborative virtual meeting platforms,” said Alok Bhardiya, head (IoT Business Unit), Tata Communications.

First, there was a dip. “The cellular-based IoT market is expected to have a YoY decline of 4.4% by end of CY2020,” said Apalak Ghosh, industry manager for digital transformation at market research and analysis firm Frost & Sullivan. He, however, expects the market to start reviving from 2021 and post as much as 22% growth the following year.


Restaurants may have to attest to food quality in real time, said Selvakumar Natesan, the lead IoT tech consultant at ThoughtWorks. That should create a market for portable food sample analysers that give instant reports.

Automatic disinfectants as well as air quality and cleanliness indicators would be needed in hotels, gyms and movie halls. Municipalities may also start deploying smart meters.

Technology could be leveraged for remote monitoring, preventing failure of critical equipment, and disease prediction and diagnosis, said Sridhar Turaga, CitiusTech’s senior vice president for data science. There will likely be higher demand for wearable health devices and air quality and blood oxygen monitors.

“There is an expectation that a digital health passport will become mandatory for train and public transportation,” ThoughtWork’s Natesan said.


Automation will be crucial for scaling production up and down according to short term demand fluctuations and also for adaptive manufacturing — for instance when ventilators are manufactured at an automobile plant, said Ravi Aggarwal, vice-president, Automation Industry Association, which represents the likes of Siemens, Larsen & Toubro, Mitsubishi and Rockwell Automation.

Infosys expects Covid-19 to lead to higher digitisation in manufacturing.


Jun 01, 2020

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