Spending on private and shared enterprise networks will surpass spending on public cellular networks in about 15 years. The traditional operator community has a fight on its hands to guarantee a place at the table, as the new Industry 4.0 networking feast unfolds over the next decade.
This is the view of ABI Research, presenting this week on the private networking market at the company’s online 5G Technology Summit – timed, like major sessions from the likes of Bosch and Siemens, to coincide with Hannover Messe when the industrial set would have descended on Lower Saxony to debate the future of the Industry 4.0 movement.
In an excellent presentation, taking a high-level view of market dynamics around spectrum, standards, and service provision for enterprise-grade cellular, ABI Research director Dimitris Mavrakis said the balance between spending on consumer and enterprise infrastructure, weighted entirely towards public networks as it stands, will shift decisively towards enterprises in about 2036.
The forecast period (see graph, below) goes into the long-term, covering the tail-end of 4G-LTE, the rise of 5G-NR, and probably the emergence of an entirely new (6G) generation of cellular. But it describes a seismic shift in the core sales and investment strategy for network building in the cellular market.
Mavrakis commented: “By 2036, what is spent on enterprise cellular will be more than [what goes] public cellular. Enterprise use cases will be more important than consumer use cases.”