MWC Shanghai: China leads in IoT, says GSMA

China has become the global leader in the deployment of Internet of Things (IoT), says the new report released by GSMA at the Mobile World Congress Shanghai.

The report, “How China Is Scaling the IoT,” says government support and focused strategy have helped China achieve this growth.

Sectors such as transportation, energy, logistics, utilities and manufacturing have all benefited from the real-time information provided by mobile connectivity to increase efficiency, lower costs and manage infrastructure.

In addition to the above, the consumer market has also gained from this growth, with millions of Chinese consumers now owning multiple connected devices and experiencing the IoT in their daily lives. The wearables market is undergoing lots of innovation, with thousands of products available at accessible prices, including smartwatches, tracking devices and fitness bands with built-in connectivity.

Another major area of growth is in connected car market. The growth of 4G network offers a range of in-car services such as entertainment, navigation, safety and vehicle diagnostics.

A report from Machina Research predicts that connected devices, such as vehicle platforms, providing services within the connected car sector will increase from 16 million in 2015 to 67.8 billion in 2020 and to 130 billion by 2024, making China the world’s largest connected car market after Russia

Alex Sinclair, chief technology officer, GSMA, added, “Connectivity is boosting major industries such as logistics, manufacturing and energy in terms of increased efficiency, but it has also created a new consumer market in areas such as connected vehicles, home appliances and wearables, putting China at the forefront of IoT deployment.”

As part of the 12th Five-Year Development Plans, Chinese government has allocated huge funding for IoT. China has also led in the development of standards, establishing an IoT standards association and promoting Chinese-developed standards internationally.

Adoption of essential industry specifications and guidelines, such as the GSMA Embedded SIM Specification and the IoT Device Connection Efficiency Guidelines, will enable further growth and scale.

As part of the IoT initiatives, the government has also selected 202 cities, including Beijing, Guangzhou, Hangzhou and Shanghai, to pilot smart city projects to collect, store and analyse information related to transportation, electricity, public safety and environmental factors.

China’s leading mobile operators, China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom, are at the vanguard in the development of the IoT and are moving from a business-to-business focus to offering more sophisticated consumer-oriented propositions via partnerships with other companies such as automotive makers and wearables companies.

Rajani Baburajan

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