Top 10 IoT applications in 2020

Which are the hottest application areas for the Internet of Things right now?

IoT Analytics continues to track in which verticals most IoT projects are happening. The latest 2020 analysi s shows that most IoT projects still happen in Manufacturing/Industrial settings, with verticals such as Transportation/Mobility, Energy, Retail and Healthcare having also increased their relative share in comparison to past analyses.

The 2020 analysis is based on 1,414 actual IoT projects that were explored as part of IoT Analytics’ research tracking IoT platforms and the underlying data is included in the 2020 list of 620 IoT platforms . The fact that more than 1,000 publicly announced IoT projects now make use of an IoT platform highlights the importance and pervasiveness of IoT platforms in bringing IoT solutions to market.

This article discusses selected IoT projects in each of the 10 application areas, including 20 examples of recent projects – stay tuned for more in-depth coverage of the top IoT use cases and more structured industry-specific deep-dives in the coming months.

( Note : The research presented in this article is confined to IoT projects that make use of an IoT Platform and does not include any consumer-focused IoT projects such as smart home, wearable devices or hobby projects).  

Top 10 IoT application areas

( Note: The analysis methodology has changed slightly compared to past IoT Application analyses – in the past IoT Analytics looked at all known IoT projects, this time, due to the fast growth in number of IoT projects, IoT Analytics confined the analysis to the projects performed in conjunction with one of the 620 known providers of IoT platforms.)

The 2020 analysis of the top IoT application areas shows that of the 1,414 public enterprise IoT projects identified, Manufacturing / Industrial settings are most common (22%), followed by Transportation / Mobility (15%) and Energy IoT projects (14%).

For reference, see the IoT Analytics IoT applications analysis 2015 here and the 2018 analysis here .

1.    IoT applications area #1: Manufacturing / Industrial

1a. Overview

Manufacturing / Industrial has taken over the top spot from “Cities” – the number one IoT application area in the 2018 analysis. Technology giants such as Microsoft and AWS as well as large industrial automation players such as Siemens or Rockwell Automation are among the driving forces of the digital transformation in the manufacturing / industrial industry.

“Industrial IoT is transforming the rules of manufacturing, fueling cloud and edge innovation, accelerating the evolution of digital factories, and enhancing operational performance.”
Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, Nov 2019

“Manufacturers and industrial operators are discovering practical ways to apply IoT across their operations, and they’re...