Technology is the biggest differentiator for businesses amidst this global pandemic. The change in business strategy and consumer preference has resulted in unprecedented growth in the integration of immersive technology for smoother operations. Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India LLP (DTTILLP) has captured this shift in preference/demand in its annual TMT Predictions 2021 report (released today).
The report captures the intersection of the edge computing market, adoption of IoT, AI, AR/VR, rise in mobility and application services, and digital transformation of enterprises. It also throws light on how these new trends are impacting businesses and consumers across the globe and in India. Elaborating on the pandemic’s economic and societal effects, the report brings to notice a range of enterprise and consumer technologies—from 5G to cloud to virtual reality—that are expected to offer diverse opportunities to the business ecosystem across India.
Commenting on the transformation brought in by COVID-19, P N Sudarshan, Partner and TMT Leader, DTTILLP said, “We have seen widespread acceleration in adoption of digital and virtual business models (from a customer lens) and operating models (from an organisational lens). We predict these trends to continue in 2021 and see India’s TMT story emerge as a credible proposition in the region.”
Major trends highlighted in the Deloitte “TMT Prediction 2021” report
- Propelling growth in the technology and telecom sector: The edge computing market in India is gaining momentum with the ‘growth of drivers’ in explosion of mobile data, driving telcos’ need for low latency media processing, public cloud, IoT, AI, and big data. While the Indian market for edge computing is smaller than global markets, the expected growth rate for edge computing in the region, driven by IoT, is likely to surpass global rate during 2020−27.
- Future of open and virtualised Radio Access Network (RAN) in India: The Open RAN ecosystem, technology, and standards are still evolving in India with telcos embarking on deployment of Open RAN architecture to realise cost benefits and performance efficiency. Open RAN is likely to be focused on secondary or small cell networks and in underserved markets, especially for telecom service providers delivering services on fourth generation technologies. With the launch of 5G, adoption rates in India could accelerate rapidly and can surpass global numbers. Use of open standards and potential to source ‘white box’ for the radio network could be a game changer, providing the financial feasibility. This enables telcos to expand their footprints (and 5G coverage in the future) and bring digital India to every doorstep not just in cities but also in the remotest villages in India.
- Telehealth to be a game-changer in post COVID-19 India: Advancements in consumer healthcare technology, along with the broader digitisation of healthcare infrastructure through telehealth platforms, will herald the next phase of healthcare service delivery in India and across the world. Investments in physical and digital infrastructure, including cybersecurity protections for data privacy and security, will help bridge the urban-rural divide and ensure everyone has access to quality healthcare.
- Acceleration in cloud adoption by organisations: Deloitte predicts 2021 to be an ‘overcast’ year – with broad-based cloud adoption across the government and public sectors, large corporates, Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) and start-ups. COVID-19, acceleration in digital and virtual adoption by organisations, the regulatory and policy push, and significant investments by existing data centre players, hyper-scale cloud providers, and new emerging market participants are unprecedented catalysts pushing the market forward.
- Booming online gaming as several favourable factors converge: Of the universe of recreational and entertainment options, those requiring physical presence or involving large gatherings became unavailable due to the pandemic. Thus, options such as live concerts, sports, and movie theaters fell out of the set of possible choices. Further, several options that could be consumed from the safety of one’s home did not allow for creation of fresh content. Thus, television broadcasters and video OTT companies had to operate with existing libraries. However, gaming and animation could support creation and consumption in the “new normal”, thus gaining an edge over other entertainment options. In the long term, the key drivers that would drive gaming consumption in India are demographics, smartphone penetration, affordable data services, improving disposable income, supply-side factors, and deeper adoption of digital payments.