The global smart water management market size is projected to witness substantial growth over the forecast period on account of growing scarcity of fresh water and rising climate volatility. Increasing non-revenue water (NRW), wherein water is wasted due to pipe bursts, metering errors, thefts, leaks, and aging infrastructure, is expected to stir up the demand for smart water management systems.
Furthermore, surging demand for potable water in order to meet needs of increasing population coupled with uneven distribution of resources is providing an upthrust to the market. Stringent government regulations related to use as well as distribution of fresh water are poised to positively impact the market. Increasing costs of installation of hardware for SWM systems are one of the key growth inhibitors for the market.
SWM systems consume low energy, which helps them edge over conventional water management systems, thereby boosting their demand worldwide. Smart water management systems encourage end users to achieve a cost efficient solution to provide enough quality water to masses. Increasing usage of advanced meters as well as sensors for detection of abnormality in water distribution is estimated to work in favor of the market.
Rising incorporation of information and technology (ICT) solutions in water management can reduce pumping and repair costs, increase efficiency in resource allocation, and reduce non-revenue water losses. Furthermore, there is an upswing in usage of remote sensing technologies such as GIS, GPS, and satellite radio communication systems for freshwater resource identification. These technologies also help in analyzing environmental impact of water management solutions. This trend is likely to offer tremendous growth opportunities for the SWM market.
Devices used for SWM technology, include cellular and fixed network technology. Development of devices that support cellular technology is projected to bolster the prominence of the technology. Furthermore, advancements in technologies have resulted in remote accessibility of pumps, easier malfunction detection in distribution system, and efficient monitoring & rectification of leaks as well as disruptions in water supply. The technology is expected to witness upsurge over the forecast period on account of increasing penetration of cellular devices. Fixed network technology is used in semi-urban and rural areas, where extent of cellular penetration is low.
Some of the common SWM solutions are network monitoring, advanced pressure management, supervisory control, data acquisition systems (SCADA), and enterprise asset management (EAM). Services offered by SWM are segmented into pipeline condition assessment, valve, hydrant, and information management.
The smart water management market is anticipated to experience significant growth during the forecast period on account of increasing scarcity of fresh water resources in emerging economies such as India and China. Furthermore, growing population in emerging economies is poised to increase the demand for fresh water, which will further rev up the adoption rate of SWM techniques.
Stringent government regulations coupled with aging infrastructure in countries such as France and Germany are estimated to drive the demand for SWM over the projected period. Spiraling usage of cloud-based solutions for water distribution is also likely to stimulate the growth of the market. In other developed countries such as the U.S., the market is projected to benefit from soaring need for technologically advanced infrastructure coupled with growing instances of irregular water supply.
Key companies operating in the market are emphasizing on use of SWM solutions to cut down risks, comply with imposed regulations, and manage rocketing resource costs. For instance, In July 2014, Cisco announced its partnership with Electronics City Industries Association (ELCIA) to use smart connected city WiFi solutions in order to set up SWM and leak detection mechanism in India.
Furthermore, In August 2015, IBM announced the launch of IBM Intelligent Water software, which makes use of advanced data management, correlation and collaboration, and visualization technologies. These technologies input disparate data from various metering systems and transform them into actionable information, which is expected to enhance the level of situational management resulting in an efficient incident management. Key market players include Siemens AG; ABB Ltd; Aclara; Schneider Electric Badger Meter; Elster; General Electric (GE); HydroPoint Data Systems Inc.; Cisco; IBM Corporation; Itron; Mueller Systems; Oracle; Sensus; and Tata Consultancy Services.
Research Support Specialist, USA