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IoT connections to grow 140 per cent

A large part of this growth is expected to be driven by edge computing services

Edge computing increases the deployment scalability and security, says Juniper
Edge computing increases the deployment scalability and security, says Juniper

The number of connected IoT (Internet of Things) sensors and devices is set to exceed 50 billion by 2022, up from an estimated 21 billion in 2018, according to latest data from Juniper Research.

The Internet of Things: Consumer, Industrial & Public Services 2018-2023 reveals that this growth, equivalent to 140 per cent over the next four years, will be driven by edge computing services -- the processing of data away from the cloud and closer to the source -- increasing both deployment scalability and security.

As part of this new research, Juniper has ranked the industry’s leading vendors:

  1. IBM
  2. Microsoft
  3. Intel
  4. Bosch
  5. Nokia

It noted that IBM’s breadth of services and investment in its Watson IoT platform has paid off. However, Microsoft’s tremendous growth in the enterprise cloud space, its IoT Edge services and prowess in artificial intelligence highlight an increasingly compelling offer in the market.

The research found that the rise of edge computing would be critical in scaling deployments up, owing to reduced bandwidth requirements, faster application response times and improvements in data security.

Juniper predicts that a substantial proportion of the estimated 46 billion industrial and enterprise devices connected in 2023 will rely on edge computing. Therefore, addressing key challenges surrounding standardisation and deployment models will be crucial.


“IoT at the edge dramatically increases project scope and value,” said research author, Steffen Sorrell. “However, it must be noted that work around standardisation, interoperability and how to manage the decentralisation of data processing remain in development.”

Juniper expects that consortium-run blockchains or similar distributed ledger technologies, such as IOTA, will play an important role in delivering future IoT events or payment transaction management.

However, it believes both approaches presently lack true decentralisation offered by public blockchains, a key requirement for end-to-end trust. Juniper claimed that opportunities for blockchain technologies in the IoT would remain limited until such issues were resolved.

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