According to ABI research, wireless sensor nodes and connected peripherals will outnumber hub devices such as smartphones and PCs in 2016 and increase their holding through 2021.

Typical accessories are residential smart home lighting, wearable devices, sensors nodes such as Bluetooth beacons, proximity sensors. These units will have a compound annual growth rate of 24.1% over the period 2016 to 2021.

"Growth will be driven by a massive uptick in contextually-aware IoT endpoints across retail, advertising and supply chain, smart home, and industrial IoT markets," said Ryan Martin, senior analyst at ABI Research, in a statement.

Today about 55% of connections are based on cellular, WiFi and Bluetooth but the advent of low-power wide area and short-range networks purpose-designed for IoT will account for 65% of wireless connections in five years, ABI said.

"Advances in mesh networking, location-aware ICs, and better utilisation of unlicensed spectrum are among the key ingredients driving wireless sensor network deployments, and, in turn, the next generation of connected devices," said Martin.