GlobalData’s Connected Enterprise Tracker Shows Industry 4.0 Driving Demand for Enterprise 5G and Private Networks

J. Marcus

Summary Bullets:

  • The Connected Enterprise Tracker is the new name for GlobalData’s unique database tracking Internet of Things (IoT) deployments.
  • It now includes details on hundreds of individual 5G and private network deployments by enterprises, in addition to thousands of IoT implementations.
  • GlobalData’s Connected Enterprise Tracker shows that the manufacturing sector accounts for 31% of the 5G and private network deployments since 2017.
  • Much of that activity is concentrated in Europe, where Industry 4.0 ‘smart factory’ developments have gained early traction.

GlobalData’s Connected Enterprise Tracker shows that the manufacturing sector accounts for 31% of the 5G and private network deployments since 2017 that we can identify by end-user organization. Much of that activity is concentrated in Europe, where Industry 4.0 ‘smart factory’ developments have gained early traction.

The Connected Enterprise Tracker is the new name for GlobalData’s unique database tracking IoT deployments. It now includes details on hundreds of individual 5G and private network deployments by enterprises, accessible via a separate dashboard, in addition to thousands of IoT implementations. Users of GlobalData’s Intelligence Center can search, filter, and visualize insights with customized charts on IoT and private network deployment trends by region, vertical, use case, connectivity, and other parameters.

As of now, the tracker has about 250 private 4G/5G network deployments, as well as a few dozen enterprise 5G IoT deployments which leverage the public network. Market leader Nokia reports it has supplied over 450 private networks, but a significant portion of its deployments have not been disclosed publicly, which means we cannot add them to the tracker. Of course, the same limitations apply to other key suppliers, including network infrastructure vendors, system integrators, and service providers. We only add those private LTE/5G deployments which (1) name the customer, (2) are commercial deployments or trials, and (3) are being used to support at least one IoT application.

Private networks have largely been deployed to support industrial verticals including manufacturing, transportation, mining, and logistics. Government organizations account for 8%, most of which support smart city use cases such as connected street lighting or ‘smart poles’ for environmental monitoring and electric vehicle charging.

Service providers appear to be involved in a large number of deals in Europe, indicating that spectrum assets used for these deployments are not necessarily based on bands for industrial use recently provided by regulators, such as those in Germany and the UK.  Rather, licensed operators are often providing dedicated bands or network slices to accommodate these customers.  Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, Telefonica, BT, Orange, Swisscom, Tele2, and Telia all feature in multiple deployments, often working alongside Nokia, Ericsson, or Huawei.

In North America, education organizations account for more deployments than any other vertical (17%), although no one vertical dominates private network adoption. Traction in manufacturing, mining, transportation, utilities, and energy is also apparent. CBRS spectrum is cited as being used in about one-third of these networks, although it could be more. In addition to Federated Wireless, Boingo Wireless, and other CBRS specialists, key suppliers include AT&T and Verizon, system integrators, and network vendors. Our tracker is not able to explicitly segment private LTE and 5G at this point, since many organizations are using both or putting in place a migration path for which we have little visibility, other than anecdotal feedback on limited 5G device availability (which is improving) and tests which show LTE bandwidth and latency are delivering on enterprise requirements for key use cases. For what it’s worth, three-quarters of all private network deployments in the tracker at least mention 5G — but a significant number of those are on a migration path that may not yet have begun.

Other insights can be found by accessing the ‘5G and Private Network Deployments’ dashboard on GlobalData’s Connected Enterprise Tracker. Users can now search the database by keyword, enabling more flexible and precise filtering to find deployments using specific terms (e.g., “edge” or “AI”). Users can also download filtered lists of IoT and private network deployments into Excel-compatible formats, with additional details provided including source links for each deployment case study.

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