China and the US are the two largest cellular M2M markets, and are on track to maintain their lead through to at least 2020, according to the GSM Association (GSMA).
The cellular industry body estimates that by this time, there will be at least one billion M2M connections worldwide. Cellular M2M will account for 974 million of these connections, constituting at least 10% of the global mobile market.
China and the US will together account for nearly half of the global cellular M2M market by 2020, the GSMA said.
The GSMA attributed China's status as the world's largest cellular M2M market to significant investment from the government, and said this underscores the importance of regulatory initiatives in stimulating M2M growth.
The body believes that the introduction of additional government policies aimed at encouraging wider deployment of cellular M2M in key sectors could be a key growth stimulator to the market.
The US market is by comparison being driven by strong growth in the automotive, smart homes and utilities sectors.