Looking Back: 2014 M2M Remote Monitoring Predictions

As we get ready for a new year of covering the latest in M2M trends, let’s take a look back at our predictions from early 2014. All said and done, I think we did alright, with the bulk of these trends playing out of the course of the past year. What else do you think shaped 2014 in the world of M2M/IoT? Let us know in the comments section below…


With each new year comes advances in remote monitoring technology to meet increasing demands for better visibility of remote assets and workers. Here are five trends that will keep pushing the envelope in 2014:

1. Filling in the gaps of monitoring oil & gas transport
RailcarsThe past year saw a dramatic increase in public/media scrutiny around the transport of oil & gas, both via pipeline and rail.

From more sophisticated and expanded pipeline leak detection to tracking the location of tankers and rail cars, oil & gas companies will push for solutions that decrease the number of manual operations and sites but still increase the safety of people and the environment.

2. Curbing water losses with leak detection and meter readings
WaterAccording to the European Commission (EC), water leakage from distribution networks is as high as 50 per cent in certain parts of Europe while globally the number is as high as 70 per cent. Utilities managers in some areas know there is no room for waste at this scale.

Automated water meter reading using M2M can improve leak detection by allowing actual consumption to be sent regularly in real time and analysed.

3. Increasing agriculture efficiencies with smarter irrigation
IrrigationIt is estimated that around 70 per cent of the world’s total water abstraction is used for agriculture.

M2M solutions that use leaf and soil moisture sensors allow growers to make informed decisions about when and for how long to irrigate fields. Wise water consumption allows for better yields and lower operating costs. Data can also be used to optimize fertilizer and pesticide application and reduce water pollution from leaching.

4. Solution and device consolidation in M2M applications
AutomationFrom workflow automation to electronic forms and fleet awareness, the ability to source all M2M solution components from a full service provider invariably leads to lower total cost of ownership, easier development and quicker time to market.

At the same time, it is now the expectation that M2M solutions interface with other low cost but capable mass-market devices such as smartphones, tablets and trip navigators.

Market demands are giving the edge to highly flexible M2M platforms that can leverage all forms of mobile connectivity, while allowing for rapid solution development to meet unique customer needs.

5. Shift of focus from ‘big data’ to the ‘right data’
If 2013 was abuzz with the potential of big data analytics, 2014 will see the M2M industry realize that the real value comes in being able to extract the right data at the right time.

M2M solutions deliver efficiency and cost benefits in their ability to send only meaningful, exception based information when it’s needed most.

What do you think the coming year will bring for M2M? Leave a comment or connect with us via social media (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook,Google+) to have your say.

Mark Kuiack is Director of Digital Marketing for ORBCOMM. He is responsible for the strategic direction of ORBCOMM's web and social media presence, and has over 15 years of experience in marketing and writing about various technology applications.

Posted in 4. Oil & Gas / Utilities, 5. M2M/IoT Trends, 6. Networks Tagged with: , , , ,

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