Electronic Products & Technology

Top trends in IoT sensors

By Marc Pegulu, vice-president of IoT, Semtech   

Automation / Robotics Electronics Wireless IoT Editor Pick IoT sensors wireless

More companies will seek out holistic connected technologies in 2021

Connected sensors are an important component to Internet of Things (IoT) solutions and this market has shown a dynamic growth rate across verticals. According to Future Market Insights, the major drivers for the connected sensors market are a direct result of companies making greater investments in sensor devices for real-time information and services for the enterprise.

In 2021, more companies will seek out holistic connected technologies that allow for better regulation and increased implementation of IoT devices. As higher bandwidth and connectivity solutions evolve, LoRa devices and the LoRaWAN open protocol will complement and fill the gap left by traditional networks, such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. With smart sensors, developers can build solutions that enable rapid application construction to meet individual needs at faster deployment rates.

Source: Getty Images

This year IoT-enabled solutions leveraging connected sensors will influence how top industries – asset tracking, smart homes and smart utilities – rethink their business models and take full advantage of long range and low power technology.

Asset Tracking

The creation of smarter, more efficient asset management solutions as supply chain risk-management becomes more critical will be a priority in 2021. There is a need for more advanced integrations such as geolocation, network connectivity, and transceivers all in one device to cloud solutions. This in turn enables increased flexibility, lower cost, minimal power consumption, and accelerated time to market.


Coming out of 2020, asset tracking solutions will help remove uncertainty around the pandemic and increase safety thanks to more advanced monitoring and tracking applications, such as contact tracing, footfall traffic detection, and proximity sensing. Use cases like this will take some of the guesswork out of health and wellness allowing individuals and healthcare workers to utilize resources better and drive greater efficiencies.

New asset-tracking systems enable indoor and outdoor solutions that come with an improved return of investment (ROI) and a much lower device and infrastructure costs, will drive significant volume in this year.

Smart Homes

The smart home market is in a transitional period from gimmicky applications to devices that drive efficiencies in real-world use cases. Consumers were buying products they thought were cool and now they want solutions that can deliver tangible benefits. More homeowners will begin to implement sensors for motion tracking, door lock management, garage door monitoring, gas/water valve use, pipe leak detection, and electrical outlet monitoring.

In 2021, smart sensors that offer homeowners immediate insight into their home’s efficiency will grow in demand. The biggest thing consumers will continue to ask for is interoperability. With IoT devices that have smart sensors, consumers will continue to want the ability to link their smart home applications together. As the smart home market continues to grow, consumers want the freedom to buy products from any manufacturer but also have the ability to link them all together. Over the next several years, this transition to more interoperable solutions will go from a nice to have to a must-have in all smart home solutions.

Smart Utilities

By implementing a smart utility infrastructure comprised of sensors and gateways that take advantage of long range low power technology, utility and metering companies can collect data remotely and use personnel more efficiently to streamline operations. With a strong value proposition to the utility market, there is the flexibility to deploy and/or leverage private and public networks in a cost-efficient manner along with interoperability that is helping the smart metering market grow.

Utilities will continue to get smarter by leveraging technology that delivers real-time data and bandwidth capabilities to support a slew of connected devices to increase system resiliency, reliability and security and cost savings. As more industries move toward smarter, sustainable, and reliable sensor-based solutions for metering and other smart applications, companies deploying this technology will emerge as early leaders in this space.

As we head into the New Year, there is an increased need for simplified, flexible, and user-friendly IoT devices encouraging widespread access to connectivity. With so many connectivity options, smart sensors will help businesses and consumers maintain secure and reliable connections between devices and servers.


About the Author 

Marc Pégulu has been vice president of IoT in the wireless and sensing products group at Semtech since June 2015. Pégulu holds a Master of Science degree in electronics and telecommunications from Institut National Polytechnique of Grenoble, France, and is a graduate of the Executive MBA program of ESCP Europe.



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