A new report from the IoT analyst firm Berg Insight ranks connected pallets as the most promising greenfield application enabled by the new wave of cellular and non-cellular LPWA technologies. The global installed base of pallets used for transportation is estimated to around 10 billion units.
“With an average sales price of $10 per unit for regular pallets, the cost of adding connectivity can be justified by increasing efficiency in many logistics operations,” said Tobias Ryberg, senior analyst and author of the report. “The ability to track pallets can also contribute to extending their lifespan which is currently around two years.”
He adds that connected pallets are being evaluated by several large industry players right now who could proceed with large-scale deployments in a very near future.
Smart cities and smart agriculture are other potential mass-volume market segments where LPWA technologies will be a key enabler. Berg Insight however believes that there are significant barriers that must be overcome before they can scale. Moving from todays limited smart cities demonstration projects to city-wide deployments will be costly, complex and time-consuming. Smart agriculture is in an even earlier stage of development where the initial focus lies on proof-of-concept and application prototyping.
“Today’s top IoT devices the connected car and the smart meter needed more than a decade to mature,” said Mr Ryberg. “The smart city and the intelligent farm will need at least that much time to grow from vision to reality.”