"No one person or company can be all things to all people," Proithis added.
Proithis points to Sigfox's investors, such as Telefonica and NTT Docomo, that will be intimately involved with the development of the 5G standard. Their support in itself is a sign that Sigfox's market will exist even as 5G becomes a reality.
Above all else, the IoT represents an opportunity for an entirely new approach to connecting devices. That's the need Sigfox is aiming to fill.
"The IoT is very, very different from mobile phones," Nicholls says. "This is a volume market. It's not about national deployments, it's about worldwide markets. So it's a very, very different place. It's a place where you need a much more agile approach to the connectivity."
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