Where Will Satellite IoT be in 2024?

satellite IoT, global connectivity

Though it may be seen as a niche technology by some, Satellite IoT is becoming an increasingly viable solution for the modern world. That’s why the market for Satellite IoT technologies and services is expected to reach a valuation of $7.8 billion by 2030.

This significant growth can be attributed to the growing accessibility and affordability of low-cost, low-power satellite options, leading numerous companies to embrace this connectivity solution.

Recent years have seen a number of exciting use cases emerge that could greatly benefit from the extensive coverage possible using satellite connectivity. Whether that be tracking global shipments, monitoring remote environmental events, or empowering precision farming, Satellite IoT will be everywhere in 2024. 

Satellite IoT is a Natural Fit for the Shipping Industry

Only about 15% of the world is covered by cellular data networks, meaning that shipping containers that, say, need to cross the ocean can disappear from tracking solutions for long periods of time. This can lead to significant risks of cargo theft, loss, tampering, etc, and makes asset tracking and delivery estimates more of a guessing game than what can be considered competitive in the modern business environment.

With the release of the 3GPP 17 standards for satellite communications, it is now possible to utilize NB-IoT over non-terrestrial networks (NTNs), expanding the options for low-power satellite connectivity and creating an attractive option for global shipping agents. 

New chipsets from companies such as Qualcomm are designed to keep off-grid IoT devices connected wherever they may roam by utilizing low-orbit satellites to ensure uninterrupted asset tracking. This level of monitoring has become essential to the shipping industry, making satellite IoT a no-brainer for the industry.

Improved Environmental Monitoring from Satellite IoT

International shipping is far from the only edge case that could benefit from the expanded coverage of satellite IoT, as ecological and environmental monitoring organizations often find themselves operating outside of existing cellular communication infrastructures. This is particularly true of wildlife tracking programs, as animals’ migratory patterns don’t adhere to any telecommunications considerations.

Organizations such as Globalstar are deploying custom hardware to monitor the health and well-being of the world’s dwindling rhinoceros population. By deploying solar-powered tracking devices among the rhino population in several nature reserves across Africa (some of which can span as many as 20,000 hectares of remote, undeveloped land), organizations can ensure the continued health and prosperity of the animal population and help secure them from poachers.

This sort of technology will also find related applications in the livestock industry, as domesticated animals can be tagged to ensure incremental understanding of their movement and activities. This can also allow farmers to optimize their production processes, reduce waste, and use resources more efficiently, making satellite IoT connectivity an attractive option for environmental operations across the globe.

Rhinos, sunset, animal tracking

More on the Role of Satellite IoT In Agriculture

The past decade has seen connected technologies revolutionize the way the world looks at agriculture; given the space required by many farming operations, satellite IoT has become increasingly appealing for large-scale farmers. One of the key developments of connected agriculture is precision farming, a practice that incorporates pooled data from smart devices to inform decisions on everything from watering and rotation of crops to the operation and maintenance of mission-critical equipment.

Companies that manufacture large machinery have begun investing in connected equipment, with the Harbor research expecting 70% of farms to be deploying these solutions by 2030. By remotely accessing and operating large machinery such as tractors, farmers are able to automate and optimize their cultivation operations using real-time data, to say nothing of irrigation systems that could also benefit from an internet connection. This gives farmers the freedom to focus on other elements of their operations and increase their efficiency.

Increased data on field equipment performance can also enable predictive maintenance, which the US Department of Energy claims could be up to 40% more cost-efficient than reactive maintenance. The ability to proactively maintain expensive equipment that operates in remote locations is integral to the success of any deployment, and satellite IoT connectivity can make the process simpler and more efficient.

Advances in Satellite Technology are Making SatIoT More Attainable

Innovations like reusable rocket technology have helped reduce the cost of satellite launches, creating more opportunities for Satellite connectivity providers to gain a foothold in this emerging market. The result is that satellite IoT is increasingly within the reach of industries that may have initially balked at the concept over cost concerns. 

Whether it’s shipping, agricultural, or environmental work, sending connected devices into remote areas is more reasonable than ever, and the coming years seem poised to reflect as much. 


Interested in learning more about Satellite IoT? Check out our white paper Expanding IoT Deployments with Cost-Effective Satellite IoT. Or if you think you’re ready to take the next step in your satellite solution, ask about our Satellite IoT Messaging Service, currently in technical preview.