As the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to enter the technology mainstream, it stands to reason many of the large service providers see the 21st Century digital smart home as their next arena of competition. Verizon Wireless and AT&T are no exceptions, as both companies are ramping up their IoT offerings hoping to attract those early adopters looking to add a measure of convenience to their daily lives.
If you are interested in controlling lights, shades, thermostats and other home devices with your smartphone, tablet, or desktop computer, read on. This heightened competition could mean better deals are possible in your location. As always, bundling services offers the most cost savings.
LTE Access to Digital Smart Home Devices
While AT&T and Verizon do provide wired Internet services, both companies are largely known as the country’s two leading wireless ISPs. The primary use-case for controlling an Internet of Things device is from within the residence, leveraging the home’s own wireless network. Other IoT applications, like accessing a video camera from a remote location, calls for the use of a carrier’s own network.
Enhancing remote control of your smart home when on the go is one reason AT&T recently announced the release of LTE modules that allow a device to connect to AT&T’s 4G LTE network. The modules also seamlessly connect to a 3G network whenever LTE connectivity is hampered. Expect availability in the second quarter of this year at a price around $15 per module. And there’s a good chance Verizon will release a similar device later this year.
Both networks are earning revenue from the Internet of Things — Verizon at $690 million and AT&T at $1 billion. In-car connections accounted for a significant portion of AT&T’s IoT revenue. With this market slated to triple to $1.7 trillion by the end of the decade, competition between the two tech giants is only expected to increase.
The Government and Commercial IoT Markets also Ripe for Growth
While the home IoT market gets most of the press, the government and commercial sectors are also expected to see significant growth over the next few years. AT&T recently launched a “smart cities framework” aimed at introducing IoT technology to manage a city’s infrastructure and public safety frameworks. IoT applications also abound in the logistics industry.
If you are considering making the jump into the Internet of Things at your home, the time is ripe. Your place of employment may also be looking at the technology in the short-term. In the meantime, make sure you have enough bandwidth to operate a digital smart home, especially if you are using multiple video cameras as part of your setup.