After having done multiple analysis of vendors within the IoT market space, I have created the IoT Vendor Scorecard which can be used to compare vendor’s offerings at a high level. This scorecard is created using public information provided by each vendor (many times translating their market speak into my framework) and sometime private roadmap details to provide an abstracted view of how each vendor’s offerings compare. The initial scorecards were created based on prior industry analysis research, consulting client engagements, and personal interests; the list of IoT Vendors continues to evolve and my goal is to add and update scorecards as time allows. The date near the top of the list indicates when the list was last updated.
The scorecard overview groups the vendors into categories based on each company’s focus:
- Cloud Providers – the usual list of cloud providers who are trying to convince you that you’re business shouldn’t include running a data center…they all have a set of IoT services which generally doesn’t cover the entire IoT Solution Reference Architecture, but their IoT services combined with other services usually come close…as long as you provide most of the developer glue.
- IoT Platform Providers – these vendors all claim to provide IoT specific platforms. The amount of developer glue needed with these platforms will vary per vendor
- IoT Function Providers – these vendors provide a specific IoT function, typically focused on a very specific area of the IoT Solution Reference Architecture. I expect this area to be constantly under represented as it can be difficult to always stay on top of all these function vendors, please send me any you think are missing.
- Enterprise Tech Vendors IoT Solutions – Every tech vendor has (or is trying to) jump on the IoT bandwagon to carve their portion out of the analyst’s sky high TAM estimates. Many of these are not full fledge platforms and usually they have multiple offerings that can provide IoT functionality. I have broke them out due to the reach and financial backing these companies usually have over the smaller IoT Function Providers.
The overview also includes a second column which links to financial information about each vendor:
- IR: Investor Relations
- CR: Customer Relations (larger private firms)
- CB: Crunchbase summary for startups/private firms
- JV: Joint Venture background information
It is important to gauge a vendor’s finances and viability as a company since the change costs within can be high and most buyers should be making their decisions with a at least a 5 years relationship horizon in mind. Also keep in mind that building out as a service platforms in general takes $75M-$100M of investment to build the technology and scale an organization with all the enablement pieces needed for commercial success.