#4 – Connected devices
Not even the sky is the limit
One of the most interesting and probably most trend setting events during 2009 was the very fast growth of the Amazon Kindle e-reader in the US. It encapsulates a few important characteristics that we believe is showing the way for an upcoming and flourishing connected device market (in the past called M2M market).
Firstly it’s developed by a vertical player for its own vertical, in this case media retailing. This increases the likelihood of success since they are closer to and understand their customers’ needs better than the traditional Operator or handset player.
Secondly, although the Kindle user is using mobile operators’ networks for the service no special subscription form is required since that is dealt with through a wholesale agreement between Amazon and the host Operator(s). It’s a simple one stop shop for the customer.
Thirdly we begin to see the enormous impact of having ubiquitous mobile broadband networks globally. Anything that can be connected, will be connected, and in not too far a future. Our prediction is that 2010 will be the real take up year for the connected device market. Networks are ready, price points for mobile chipsets are dropping radically and will continue to do so. And many Operators have started to understand that it’s a market that requires a different business model than their traditional retail market. Expect a fast growing market that by the end of the next decade is far greater, not in revenues but in connections, than the traditional handset and subscription market.