Big Changes Shake Up IoT This Week

By James Brehm

The past few days have caused quite a stir in IoT. Earnings, acquisitions and changes happened for some of the leading industry giants, including Verizon, Sprint, and Ericsson.

Verizon announced earnings marked by seasonably low net additions(while showing modest gains in IoT), reduced revenue from the move from subsidization to installment plans and a little bit from increased pressure from competitors. However the big news is really about the Yahoo! acquisition and Verizon's strategy around content. It will be interesting to see how Verizon will leverage and monetize the premium content Yahoo provides and how they will work with sports networks and leagues and news agencies/feeds.

Sprint announced results this week with favorable response from most on Wall Street. While the terms IoT and M2M didn’t come up in management comments, customer growth is driving new subscriber growth at the carrier. Sprint has another big quarter in M2M. Sprint’s M2M base grew by 7% quarter over quarter. This continues a two plus year climb for the M2M team at Sprint.  Even though not acknowledged by CEO Marcelo Claure, Sprint’s M2M subscribers now account for nearly 19% of all Sprint’s connections.

In a early morning move, the Ericsson board pushes out long time CEO Hans Vestberg leaving most of us scratching our heads. While it's no secret that Ericsson has struggled for several quarters. But what caused the board to push the eject button now? Without Vestberg and Chambers at the helms of their respective companies, is this the end for the faltering partnership with Cisco? With new 5g revenue a distant dream for Ericsson, will they make an acquisition in optical to drive revenue? Will they put together a cohesive IoT strategy?

As we continue into Q3, many of us are curious as to what this means for the rest of 2016.