IoT connectivity for healthcare related devices is a small but growing opportunity. Pyramid estimates that the total number of patients remotely monitored through SIM-based IoT connections at 4.7m at the end of 2015, and we expect this to grow to nearly 18m in 2020, representing a CAGR of 31%. Healthcare services account for just 1-2% of total wireless IoT SIM-based connections.
SIM-based IoT connectivity for remote patient monitoring is growing, while fixed connectivity is declining. Those conditions requiring constant monitoring (and so often needing to be mobile) and where convenience and ease of use are important are best suited to using SIM-based cellular connectivity, which is also more costly than alternative approaches.
Direct patient-to-physician communication and access to near real-time data are also driving demand for SIM-based IoT connectivity. Sleep therapy and CRM are the two main areas for which remote SIM-based connectivity is best suited, together accounting for over three-quarters of total SIM-based connections.
The forthcoming availability of SIM-based LPWA networks, (NB-IoT in particular) will be an important market driver for the demand of SIM-based healthcare services, improving (indoor) coverage, increasing battery life and lowering costs.
These benefits are particularly pertinent for wearable devices, enabling better monitoring and improving patient comfort.
Pyramid Research’s latest report “IoT Healthcare Opportunities for MNOs: Market Forecasts and MNO Approaches” offers an in-depth analysis of SIM-based IoT connectivity technologies, services and end-user requirements, devices and applications and the service provider ecosystem and the role of MNOs in the IoT health value chain.
The report includes forecasts through 2020 for SIM-based IoT connections by type including cardiac rhythm management (CRM), remote electrocardiogram (ECG), blood remote monitoring, sleep diagnostic and therapeutic devices, as well as service revenue for SIM-based IoT connectivity.
Built around case studies, the report provides MNO and device manufacturer positioning strategies in the healthcare vertical and what works and what doesn’t.