GSMA Intelligence cut its forecast for global IoT revenue in 2025 to $906 billion due to the impact of the Covid-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, with earnings from professional services set to be one of the hardest hit segments.

In its August update, the analyst company noted even at its revised level revenue was an almost threefold increase on 2019. Previously it expected IoT revenue to be $1.1 trillion in 2025.

Analysts noted as part of their response to the pandemic, enterprises had readjusted to focus on remote access and automation, placing the short-term emphasis on software tools and cloud.

“As enterprises focus on survival, discretionary spend is currently under scrutiny to preserve cash, which negatively impacts IoT consulting revenues in particular,” GSMA Intelligence added.

“Some latent spend from 2020 will shift to 2021 and beyond, but as economic growth returns we expect IoT professional services revenue growth to return to preCovid-19 levels, with systems integration the main contributor to revenue.”

Regional differences
Although tempering its overall revenue forecast, it noted there would be regional variations, with Asia Pacific least affected. In several markets here, it added, IoT was being deployed in state-sponsored initiatives to mitigate the impact of the crisis.

By contrast, it pointed to a “bleaker outlook” in Latin America, with Brazil cited as a country where 50 per cent of enterprises had struggled securing return on investment for IoT deployments.

In terms of devices, it stood by numbers published in early June, stating the net increase in IoT devices would dip 45 per cent in 2020. Here it stuck by long-term forecasts predicting device numbers to double between 2019 and 2025.