Internet of Things Opens Fresh Revenue Stream for Cable Operators

To say that the Internet of Things (IoT)—or the ever-growing network of connected devices—has exploded would be a gross understatement. According to research from Cisco, there will be 25 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2015 and 50 billion by 2020. That’s more connected devices than people—a lot more!

From smart thermostats to self-driving vacuum cleaners, consumers are increasing their adoption of IoT devices. In fact, 30 percent of consumers already own or plan to purchase an in-home IoT device in the next two years, according to research from Acquity Group. These devices—which are able to “talk” to other connected objects or devices via a wired or wireless Internet connection—help to save consumers money and eliminate some of the hassles of everyday life.

Consumers aren’t the only ones benefitting from the growth of IoT, however. As a primary provider of consumer Internet services, cable operators hold the key to connectivity and are, therefore, in prime position to generate substantial revenue from the explosion of IoT devices.

Think of it this way: As more consumers adopt IoT devices, the more attached they will become to their Internet connections and the companies (i.e., cable operators) that provide them. To really take advantage of the IoT, however, operators must invest in their wireless networks so they are able to keep up with the increase in data usage and transmission from IoT devices.

Although cable companies are losing pay-TV subscribers to alternative OTT providers, they’re plenty of opportunities to increase monetization and make up for this lost revenue with the explosion of IoT devices.